Leicester City should offload Andy King and Adrien Silva in January
After a remarkable turnaround of fortunes under Claude Puel last season which saw Leicester City finish 9th in the standings, there hasn’t been anything spectacular from the Foxes this term in the Premier League. Claude Puel’s men slipped to 12th in the standings after a shock 1-0 defeat at the hands of Crystal Palace this week.
Much of Leicester’s woes this season has been down to the inconsistent displays of several of the key players in the squad. The loss of Riyad Mahrez to Manchester City in the summer dealt a huge blow to their chances and Rachid Ghezzal hasn’t quite proved his worth as a replacement.
As things stand, Leicester once again face the risk of mid-table obscurity this season and they need a few fresh faces in January to boost their chances of securing a Europa League spot. Here are 2 players that they should offload to make room for new arrivals:-
1. Adrien Silva
The Euro 2016 winner made as many as 9 starts for the Foxes in the second half of the last season after completing his move from Sporting Lisbon. However, he has been frozen out of the first team by Puel this season and his involvement has largely been limited to the domestic cup competitions.
Silva started the game against Manchester United on the opening day of the Premier League but he hasn’t started a game since then, with his only other appearance being a cameo against Wolves.
Leicester are already well stocked in the central midfield with Nampalys Mendy and Wilfried Ndid while Vicente Iborra is also an option for Puel.
A technically sound central midfielder, the Portuguese international still has plenty to offer at the highest level and Leicester should cash in on him in January to raise valuable funds.
2. Andy King
A product of Leicester City’s youth system, King made his debut back in 2007 and has been an integral part of their journey through League One and Championship and was a part of the 2015-16 squad that won the Premier League.
The 30-year-old is yet to make a single appearance for Leicester this season after spending time on loan at Swansea last season. The veteran has accumulated 61 goals and 24 assists from 374 appearances for the Foxes across all competitions and there shouldn’t be a shortage of potential suitors should Leicester place him on the transfer list.
Leicester loaning out this £19m ace should be the way forward for Rodgers and here is why
Leicester City Opinion: Foxes should loan out Caglar Soyuncu in the summer
Fenerbahce already have club-record signing Islam Slimani playing on loan from Leicester and they have now set their sights on out-of-favour centre-back Soyuncu as a replacement for former Liverpool man Martin Skrtel.
Soyuncu joined Leicester last summer from Bundesliga club Freiburg for a hefty £19 million fee but he hasn’t been able to adapt to the Premier League.
The 22-year-old was handed his first-team debut by former manager Claude Puel but he has fallen down the pecking order after making just 5 appearances in the Premier League.
Having at Leicester as a Bundesliga regular and a full international for Turkey, Soyuncu was tipped for great things at the King Power Stadium. The Turk was brought into the team to compete with the ageing duo of Wes Morgan and Jonny Evans for a place alongside Harry Maguire at the heart of the defence.
Soyuncu arrived with the reputation of a solid ball-playing defender but he hasn’t been able to justify those claims with his performances in the Premier League.
Besides misplacing even the simplest of passes, the Turk has let his team down with his lack of composure and has committed fouls in dangerous areas. He has looked like a player who is short of confidence, often scuffing the most mandate clearances and failing to ensure safety.
To sum it up, his displays at the back have been anything but solid and it would be fair to say that he hasn’t played with enough authority to convince the manager to hand him more starts.
Meanwhile, Filip Benkovic, who also arrived at Leicester last summer, has spent a fruitful loan spell at Celtic and one would expect him to challenge for a first-team spot next season once his loan spell comes to an end.
Brendan Rodgers managed to extract the best out of Benkovic at Celtic and there is every chance that the Croatian will be catapulted to the first-team at the King Power Stadium next season.
Benkovic’s return would push Soyuncu further down the pecking order at the club, and as evident from Leicester’s stance of extending Wes Morgan’s contract following Rodgers’ arrival, the Foxes are still going to have their club-captain in the mix for at least another season.
Quite clearly, the Turk’s chances of playing regularly in the Premier League next term look bleak and a loan move to his homeland with Fenerbahce should allow him to work on his flaws and further his development.
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The likes of Morgan and Evans are not going to be around for much longer and a loan move away from the club would not spell the end of Soyuncu’s future by any means.
In fact, a loan move to Fenerbahce would help his regain his confidence and give him a better opportunity of challenging for a first-team place in the foreseeable future. That said, Leicester should not hesitate to ship him out on loan for the benefit of all parties involved.
Leicester reigniting interest in this 25-year-old goal machine would provide Rodgers with ideal backup for Vardy
Leicester City Opinion: Why the Foxes should go all out to sign Roger Assale
Back in April last year, a report from the Daily Mail claimed Leicester City were tracking Young Boys striker Roger Assale ahead of a summer transfer. However, a move never materialised and the Ivorian stayed with Young Boys.
Roger Assale, 25, scored 21 goals and provided 14 assists in 49 games as Young Boys won the title last season. However, his productivity has declined this campaign as the Ivory Coast international has only scored seven goals and supplied six assists in 23 games thus far.
Regardless of his drop in numbers, Leicester City should reignite their interest in Assale and sign him this summer.
The Foxes have an exciting attacking unit, filled with young talents like James Maddison, Demarai Gray and Harvey Barnes. But the club needs a bonafide goal-scorer to replace the ageing Jamie Vardy, who has been a brilliant servant at the King Power Stadium.
Vardy has scored 12 goals this season, racking up a century of goals in the blue jersey of Leicester and already flourishing under new manager, Brendan Rodgers. Yet, Rodgers should plot a replacement for the former England international, who turned 32 earlier in January.
The Foxes need goals and without Vardy they struggle, with Kelechi Iheanacho not living up to the expectations since moving from Manchester City in 2017. Shinji Okazaki will turn 33 next month and may leave the club after his contract expires at the end of this season.
That makes signing a centre-forward so important for the Foxes and Rodgers should plot a summer swoop for Roger Assale.
The Ivorian is the type of player Leicester City desperately is in need of. Assale is not just a fine dribbler; he also happens to be a nippy, technically-gifted and powerful forward with a superb eye for goal. He keeps the ability to race past his opponent in a blink of an eye and score a goal, that’s how quick and decisive he is in the final third.
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The 25-year-old is lethal inside the box, has decent pace and knows how to generate space in the attacking third of the pitch. He will enter his prime in the next year or so and will be a fantastic signing for a team like Leicester.
The acquisition of Assale would undoubtedly bolster the Foxes’ attacking options at the King Power Stadium. Rodgers and the Leicester board should do everything in their power to bring the diminutive Ivorian to the Midlands in the summer as the striker could give Leicester City a boost in challenging the Big Six next season.
These 3 strikers would be perfect to replace Jamie Vardy at Leicester – including this 16-goal star
Leicester City Opinions: 3 realistic successors to Jamie Vardy at Leicester
Leicester City are a club that somehow managed to achieve what was considered to be impossible in the modern era in the presence of monstrous teams like Liverpool, Manchester United and Manchester City
They won the Premier League against all the odds and looked like they should be champions-elect right from the first fixture of the season.
With sheer hard work and passion for the cause from the men in blue, Claudio Ranieri had got something going at the King Power Stadium.
With some excellent work in midfield from Danny Drinkwater and World Cup winner N’Golo Kante, who are both Chelsea players now, they were able to dominate even teams from the top-6 and thereby hold top spot right until the final day of the season.
The main factor in that season were the crucial goals and most of them were delivered by English forward Jamie Vardy.
The man who rose from playing Sunday league football to the Premier League level in the blink of an eye, Vardy’s exploits for the Foxes that season are part of history.
His goals have kept the Foxes fans going through difficult times after that as well and despite his ripe age of 32, he still delivers on a consistent basis and works his socks off each and every time he steps on the football pitch.
While he is a club legend, at 32, the need to look for alternative is high and this summer could be the perfect time. Here are three players who can readily replace the talismanic forward:
The Cameroonian international forward has become a key player for BSC Young Boys since making the switch from Servette for a meagre sum of under a full million.
The 25-year-old has been in good league form and has picked up 8 goals from his 20 games this term. Tall and well-built, his size certainly doesn’t deter with him mobility and using his long strides, he puts himself about on the pitch and that could just what Leicester need.
The young Scottish international forward has been brilliant up-front for Swansea City this season and he is the club’s top scorer as well. With 16 goals and 4 assists from his 33 appearances, his efficiency certainly doesn’t need to be questioned.
Still only 22, he has the right attributes to make a name for himself in the English game and his movement and positioning in the box will suit the talented midfielders in the Foxes ranks and that’s why this move is assured to be a hit.
The Dutch youth international is a very highly rated PSV academy product who is currently employed by fellow Eredivisie club Heerenveen for who he has scored 14 times this season from 23 appearances.
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With 5 assists to his name as well, at just 21, he has the perfect opportunity to announce himself by making the switch to King Power where he would be able to sit in perfectly given his attacking and finishing capabilities.
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