Leicester City Opinion: Foxes should make James Forrest a top priority in the summer
According to The Times, Leicester City are weighing up a deal for £10 million-rated Celtic winger James Forrest this summer, with reports claiming that Brendan Rodgers is plotting a sensational reunion with the 27-year-old Scottish international.
Leicester, though, are not the only club in the Premier League to have expressed an interest in Forrest, with The Scottish Sun reporting back in January that Liverpool were also keeping tabs on the player.
Forrest, who has been associated with Celtic since the age of 11, is widely regarded as one of the brightest talents in the Scottish Premiership and has helped the Hoops to seven consecutive domestic league triumphs.
The 27-year-old boasts of an impressive tally for Celtic, having accumulated a total of 72 goals and 70 assists from 347 appearances for the Hoops in all competitions over the course of his illustrious career at Parkhead.
Essentially a right-winger by trade, Forrest has also showcased the versatility to play out wide as an inverted winger on the left and as an attacking midfielder through the centre.
Noted for his low centre-of-gravity, lightning pace, exceptional close control, dribbling skills, sharpness and agility, Forrest not only has all the attributes of a natural winger but he is also good enough to be regarded as a playmaker, owing to his passing, crossing and vision.
The Scottish international boasts of an impressive range of passing in his repertoire of skills and he combines that with his trickery, acceleration, drive and determination to tear the opposition to pieces.
The 27-year-old has a wonderful eye for goal from all ranges, while also possessing the work-ethic to track back and help out his defenders, which is a sine-qua-non for any winger in the English game.
To put things into perspective, Leicester City could strike gold with the signing of James Forrest in the summer and the fans at the King Power Stadium should be absolutely overjoyed if Brendan Rodgers manages to complete this audacious swoop.
However, Forrest is one of the top players in the Scottish Premiership and a firm fan favourite at Celtic, which might make it difficult for the deal to go materialize.
The Foxes have looked like a different team altogether since the arrival of Rodgers a couple of months back and the new manager has done a great job in transforming their fortunes in the Premier League.
Rodgers’ arrival has also sparked a massive upturn in form for Jamie Vardy, who has scored 10 goals in the last 10 games to propel the Foxes to 6 wins from their last 10 Premier League outings.
James Maddison has continued to prove his worth as one of the best emerging playmakers in the top five leagues of Europe, while on-loan sensation Youri Tielemans has strengthened his claims of earning a permanent transfer with some consistently impressive performances in central midfield.
Academy products Harvey Barnes and Hamza Choudhury have shown strong signs of excellence under Rodgers, which is another positive that Leicester should take from his brief reign so far.
However, the Foxes are yet to find a replacement for Riyad Mahrez, who made his move to Man City last summer. They brought in his international teammate Rachid Ghezzal from Monaco to fill in his boots but he hasn’t had much of a positive impact in the Premier League this season.
It has been quite clear form Rodgers’ team selection that he doesn’t see Ghezzal as a regular starter, and although the Foxes have the likes of Demarai Gray and Marcus Albrighton as options out wide on the right, someone like James Forrest can help them improve massively in the final third.
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James Forrest is one of the most influential figures at Celtic and it is unlikely that he would leave his boyhood club to reunite with Rodgers. But, if they do manage to strike a deal for the 27-year-old, it would be nothing short of a masterstroke.