Leicester ramping up their pursuit of Italian hotshot
As Premier League champions, Leicester are sailing into the group stages of the Champions League (what a time to be alive) but with it comes the perils of the extra toll European football brings.
Claudio Ranieri called upon just 23 players to steer the Foxes to a 5000/1 title, but now the east Midlands club are on the prowl for some extra squad depth.
Leicester mainly used Jamie Vardy, Leonardo Ulloa and Shinji Okazaki upfront this season, but traditionally squads largely require four strikers for a solid campaign at home and abroad.
That’s something the Foxes’ board are clearly aware of, and it’s been reported again this week that Leicester are continuing their chase of Italian striker Gianluca Lapadula.
Again looking to the lesser-known names, Lapadula has been a star in Serie B this term, scoring 24 times in addition to 10 assists for Pescara.
The 26-year-old is a large part of why his side sit third in the table, and valued at just a couple of million, Leicester could again be eyeing up a bargain deal.
Juventus are also rumoured to be in contention, but this is 2016 and both the Old Lady and the Foxes can head into next year’s Champions League as indeed, champions.
Ranieri has made it clear that Leicester are only interested in players who are of the same calibre as his current crop of heroes, so they’ve clearly seen a few things in Lapadula that they like.
On the pitch, Lapadula fits the Jamie Vardy-remit, bringing bags of pace and a sharp finish, while those 10 assists hint at a solid team ethic.
With Ulloa and Okazaki fulfilling the workhorse role, the arrival of the Pescara man would allow Ranieri to rest Vardy and alternate between two out-and-out goalscorers.
So if you haven’t heard of who Leicester are targeting this summer, don’t worry, they know what they’re doing, and they’ve become rather good at it.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.