By Richard Parks
Peterborough United manager Steve Evans has hailed “exceptional” Jack Marriott as a superior striker to Chris Wood.
The former Leeds United boss drooled over the centre-forward after he netted his 31st goal of the season in Monday’s 2-0 win against Northampton Town.
Marriott, 23, has also been directly involved in 30 league goals for Posh this season, a record that is second across all four English leagues only to Liverpool sensation Mohamed Salah.
The Mirror claimed in January that the Yorkshire giants were in pole position to land the striker, but they instead signed Tyler Roberts from West Brom for a fee of around £4million.
“One thing we have is, just simply, the best goalscorer I’ve ever worked with,” said Evans to BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, as quoted by the BBC Sport website. “He’s absolutely stunning. This boy’s up there with the Dwight Gayle’s of this world and he (Gayle) was exceptional.
“That young man is most likely going to go and join an absolutely huge club in the summer – that’s unless the chairman continues to do what he did in the January window when he was turning down, I think, around £6.5m or £7m.
“I’ve said to you he’s better than some of the strikers I’ve worked with, and I’ve worked with Chris Wood at Leeds, but Marriott is the best finisher I’ve ever worked with.”
Football Insider verdict:
Marriott has made the climb from the English fourth tier to League One look an easy one and he has the game and predatory instincts to thrive in the Championship. Evans is not averse to hyperbole, but he also knows his onions, and if he believes Marriott is on a different level to Wood, that is an big indicator of the calibre and potential of one of the outstanding players outside of the Premier League. Posh recognise that failure to secure promotion will end their hopes of hanging on to the forward, who will no doubt ease the pain of his exit with a big-money fee.
In other Leeds United transfer news, the club are working on a deal to sign an English centre-back who has been the best in the league this season.