Leicester City made another notable transfer purchase on Thursday, finally sealing the addition of Nigerian striker Kelechi Iheanacho from Manchester City.
It’s a five-year contract for the 20-year-old striker, though Man City likely included a significant buyback clause (perhaps as high as $66 million). Reports say the purchase fee is close to $33 million.
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Leicester has already added defensive midfielder Vicente Iborra from Sevilla as well as Hull City center back Harry Maguire. Iheanacho completes a trio of big spine moves for the 2015-16 Premier League champions.
“It’s a great signing for us. Kelechi is an enormously talented player that has shown a huge amount of promise at every level in which he’s played. We’ve tracked his progress for some time, so we know how much quality he’ll bring to the squad. He’s young, he’s hungry, he’s ready for the next stage of his development and I’m delighted that will be with Leicester City.”
Iheanacho has 21 goals in 64 appearances despite being just 20 years old, and 12 of those goals have come in the Premier League. He also has six goals in 10 senior international caps for Nigeria, and will form a potent pair with Jamie Vardy.
More importantly, perhaps the moves and last season’s emergence of Wilfried Ndidi can convince Riyad Mahrez to stay in Leicester. Without UCL or Europa League play, the Foxes could challenge for a European place.