After a miraculous escape from relegation in the 2014/2015 campaign, Leicester were discounted by many at the beginning of the 2015/16 campaign. A year of hardship was expected, but the Foxes have spent nine months defying the odds. Leicester have achieved the impossible by claiming their maiden Premier League title in the club’s 132-year history.
Claudio Ranieri is expected to strengthen his squad significantly this summer as the Premier League champions look to defend their title next season as well as meet the demands of Champions League football. The new TV deal signed by English Premier League gives the clubs more freedom in the transfer market as the English teams are now a step ahead of other country league teams financially. Also, the English Premier League is the world’s priciest league, the team which won the English Premier League can spend a handsome amount in the transfers just by collecting the price money. Addition to that, Leicester City are not intended to keep their last season wonder performers as the players including N’Golo Kante, Jamie Vardy, and Riyad Mehraz are continuously linked with a move away from the King Power stadium.
So, here are the 5 players we think Leicester could target who could help the Foxes retain in the top flight:
1. Ahmed Musa
The 23-year-old Nigerian international was a target for Leicester City in January but the deal was not completed as Leicester believed since CSKA’s asking price was too high.
Musa is fast, can play across frontline and has scored 12 goals in 32 games this season for the Russian giants.
He would also add Champions League experience, something lacking in Ranieri’s squad ahead of next season.
2. Simone Zaza
The former Sassuolo striker is unhappy with the lack of playing time at Juventus and is considering his options.The 24-year-old Italian forward was on the brink of leaving the club during the January transfer window, but manager Massimiliano Allegri refused to approve a potential transfer and Zaza stayed put. Zaza made 17 appearances for Juventus in all competitions this season and scored 5 goals in the process.
Juventus striker could be attracted by the Champions League football as well as the Premier League challenge and could make a move to King Power Stadium.
3. Yevhen Konoplayanka
The 26-year-old Ukrainian international joined Sevilla on a free transfer from Dnipro last summer. Premier league sides Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur were interested in him but he decided to join Sevilla.
Konoplayanka made 52 appearances for Sevilla scoring 8 and assisting 8, not a bad stat for a player who joined for free.
Leicester boss Claudio Ranieri is a huge admirer of the winger and will press ahead with a move if Sevilla drops their asking price of £32m. There would be fireworks in Leicester if he was to arrive,but until now he is a Sevilla player.
4. Adil Rami
The 30-year-old French International joined Sevilla for a fee of £3.5m from Milan last summer, after failing to break into starting eleven at the San Siro. He made 46 appearances in all competitions for Sevilla scoring 3 times.
With Leicester competing in the Champions League next season, their back line looks very sleek.Wes Morgan and Huth have formed a formidable partnership at the back for the Foxes but they are 32 and 31 respectively and aren’t going to get any younger. Rami could be the perfect defender for Leicester as they look to bolster their back-line.
Rami is strong, good in the air, and is available for under just £5m. A player who can make the headlines as ‘signing of the season’ if he plays to his potential, but Leicester should sign him first before thinking about the headlines.
5. Mile Jedinak
While Kante and Danny Drinkwater are excelling in central midfield at the moment, a new face may be necessary to compete in there. In London, Mile Jedinak is out of favour with Alan Pardew’s Crystal Palace but could provide a strong, experienced, and a short-term option, as he is already 31.
Leicester won’t really want to mess with what they’ve got from a starting eleven perspective,but they would love to add a back-up in their midfield.
The Socceroos International would certainly not be a Block Buster signing but he is a cheap and viable option, perhaps.
Leicester City have not made any notable impact in the transfer window yet, but it is expected that the Foxes will gear up their squad in order to defend their Premier League crown. Also, Ranieri would love to make a mark in the Elite stage of Europe, the Champions League. All that depends on how effectively Leicester use the transfer window in the summer.