Youri Tielemans (mid) Monaco – loan made permanent; Ayoze Perez (att) Newcastle; James Justin (def) Luton; Filip Benkovic (def) Celtic – end of loan; Andy King (mid) Derby – end of loan; Adrien Silva (mid) Monaco – end of loan; Fousseni Diabate (att) Sivasspor – end of loan; Islam Slimani (att) Fenerbahce – end of loan;
Danny Simpson (def) released; Shinji Okazaki (sp) (att) Malaga;
Leicester’s tragic last season, the team’s Thai owner died in a helicopter crash right after one of the games in October, is hopefully behind everyone. The appointment of Brendan Rodgers in late spring was so he could get to know the squad and then have positive transfer activity in the summer.
Rodgers did just that, spending over £100million on 3 players. Making Tielemans a permanent signing was a major success for the club as they beat big teams to obtain his services. Perez also looks to be a great piece of business, with the Spaniard already forming an impressive partnership in attack with Vardy.
Leicester are expected to play modern football with fast ball movement, but the main issue that many tend to overlook is the defensive instability. Scoring goals has never been a problem, but at the back they constantly get exposed.
Full-backs Pereira and Chilwell are not always tracking back once caught out of position, plus individual errors in the heart of the defence resulted in 8 goals conceded last season, with only relegated Fulham and Huddersfield conceding more after direct mistakes.
Rodgers has options to test in defence though, and even if Maguire leaves this summer, the returning from loan Benkovic could emerge as the player to build around at the back. For most of last season Rodgers managed the young Croat at Celtic and was really pleased with him.
Only if Leicester can improve defensively they can challenge for Europe again. Going forward the Foxes shouldn’t have problems scoring goals.
Qualifying for Europe is a must, but for the Foxes to achieve that, they will need others to make mistakes and also to keep all their key players fit and healthy all season.