Forget it Rodgers – Leicester splashing €60m on this 19-year-old ace is a risk that’s simply not needed

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Why Leicester should refrain from splashing the cash on Gonzalo Plata

According to a report from Portuguese outlet Record via Sport Witness (h/t Leicestershire Live), Sporting Lisbon want €60m for the services of winger Gonzalo Plata, who is a target for Leicester City.

The 19-year-old Plata spent time at the academies of Ecuadorian clubs Fedeguauyas and LDU Quito, before joining Independiente’s youth setup. Having progressed through the ranks, the winger broke into the first-team in 2018. Only 13 appearances later, in which he scored one goal and assisted one more, he was signed by Sporting in the summer of 2019.

Plata spent the early part of his career with the Portuguese club with the reserves. But since the turn of the year, he has been a regular fixture in the first-team. Till date, he has made 14 appearances for the club, scoring two goals and setting up one more.

Gonzalo Plata 1
Gonzalo Plata reacts during a match (Getty Images)

Leicester City, meanwhile, have had a splendid 2019/20 campaign. In what was Brendan Rodgers’ first full season in charge at the club, the Northern Irishman has led the club to a very impressive third place in the Premier League table.

The Foxes have the third-highest number of goals in the league this season. They also boast the third-best defensive record, showing how impressive they have been at both ends of the pitch. But, with the club set to play in Europe next season, it would bode well for Rodgers & co. to strengthen their squad ahead of the next season.

However, signing Plata might not be the most prudent move by the Foxes. The 19-year-old winger is way too inexperienced, with not even a single full season of senior football under his belt. Furthermore, Leicester have a number of options that play in a similar position as the Ecuadorian international.

Summer signing Ayoze Perez has predominantly been used on the right flank this term, from where he has scored six goals in 22 matches. Marc Albrighton and Demarai Gray are also options at Rodgers’ disposal for the position.

Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers
Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers

True that Plata would bring in a different skillset to the current options. But the teenager lacks the requisite experience at the moment. And shelling out as much as €60m for him would be ill-advised, especially at a time when finances of the club are set to be negatively impacted due to the coronavirus crisis.

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Verdict

Leicester should add depth to their squad in the summer as they gear up for a season in European football. However, signing Gonzalo Plata might be imprudent for the club. The 19-year-old doesn’t have a single full season of senior football under his belt still. And paying €60m for such an inexperienced winger would be wrought with risk.