Claude Puel has had a pretty good impact at Leicester City since taking over. The side are currently 8th in the league and considering how the table is right now, 7th is perhaps the best the Foxes can hope for in the league.
The coming summer will be an important one for Puel and the club. We’ve already seen that if the gaffer has the right players, he can do well. In a bid to add more strength to the team, they’ve been linked with Benfica defender Andre Almeida.
The Portuguese side have placed a £15 million valuation for the full-back who was scouted by Leicester recently.
Almeida – fact file
The Portuguese international has been at the club for quite a while now and has put in consistent performances for the side. He’s a good attacking full-back which is evident from his numbers so far this season.
In 22 league appearances, Almeida has mustered 5 assists and has even scored 2 goals himself which is pretty impressive for a right-back. But the numbers don’t necessarily mean is neglects his defensive duties.
A pretty tall fullback, he excels in aerial duels. He’s also averaged a pretty good 1.8 tackles per game in the league, so he could be a good option for the Foxes. (Stats via Whoscored)
Is he worth the fuss?
At 27, he is entering the peak years as an athlete, so perhaps it’s the right time to move. His valuation might seem a bit high, but considering today’s market and the years left on his contract (his contract with the club runs till 2021), perhaps it’s fair for Benfica to ask £15 million.
Leicester City have a dearth of right-backs at the club. When Danny Simpson isn’t fit, they have a problem as there is no other natural right-back at the club. Daniel Amartey was used as a makeshift full-back and he didn’t do that well.
Also considering the fact that Simpson in 31 already, Puel needs to be backed with the money to sign a good backup. The gaffer did well at Southampton by making them finish in the top 10 and almost winning a Cup, so he is someone who can make the best use of his squad.
If Leicester can do that extra bit and back him up with better players, perhaps the Foxes can target a better league finish and maybe a good Cup run next season.