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Do Leicester City really need Bakary Sako?

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With reports suggesting the Foxes are in pole position to sign the Wolverhampton Wanderers winger, it asks the question is Sako really what Leicester need?

It isn’t the first time Leicester have been linked with a move for the Mali international and there were rumours surrounding the club’s interest in him in the January transfer window.

Sako’s contract at Wolves finishes the summer and he has already spoken about a potential move to the Premier League after reportedly attracting interest from Aston Villa, West Brom and Everton. His 15 goals and 7 assists for Wolves last season in the league has been the reason for a number of Premier League teams looking at him, but his wage demands have put a number of teams off.

The reports were that Sako wanted £80,000 a week, but the details of Sako’s potential move to Leicester are that his wages would be around £50,000, making him one of the club’s highest earners. This would be a huge risk for a player who is unproven in the top flight of English football and the position he plays in isn’t really one that needs strengthening in the Leicester team.

Nigel Pearson found the best formation for his team in the latter stages of last season which accommodated Jeffrey Schlupp, Marc Albrighton and Riyad Mahrez. With Schlupp on the left and Albrighton on the right they were able to offer an attacking game as well as performing their defensive duties. Mahrez was played in a central role behind the strikers away from his usual position on the wing, allowing him to play freely in order to bring the best out of him.

So where would Sako fit in? Schlupp and Albrighton have shown their strengths going forward as wing-backs, but should the manager choose a more defensive set-up he has the option of Ritchie De Laet on the right, and new signing from Schalke Christian Fuchs on the left.

It is obvious that wingers aren’t the main priority for Leicester City, as the results from their last nine league games were reflective of the efforts from the attacking players. The key area to strengthen is the defence, as the Foxes will hope to sign Stoke City’s Robert Huth on a permanent deal after he made a solid contribution to Leicester’s great escape during his loan spell at the club. Leicester have also been linked with Hull City’s James Chester; a player who Nigel Pearson signed for Hull back in 2011 when he was the manager of the club.

Another area Leicester will be keen to build on will be the central midfield. Esteban Cambiasso is still considering the options on his future after his contract runs out this summer, and with Matty James’ injury potentially keeping him out until 2016 Leicester will be struggling for replacements.

It is difficult to see where Bakary Sako would fit into this Leicester team, as although he would bring pace and flair to the side he is no better than the players currently in the first team. His wages are a huge concern as well because if the reports are accurate and Leicester are willing to offer the 27-year-old £50,000 per week, it would leave people thinking the money could be put towards a player of a higher calibre. Leicester fans would most definitely rather see Cambiasso gain a wage increase in order to try and persuade him to stay at the club than offer high wages to an unproven player.

Should Leicester sign Sako, he will have to put a large amount of effort in to get near the first team, as the players who finished in the starting eleven last season will be confident of retaining their place for the upcoming season in the Premier League.

Bakary Sako Nigel Pearson west brom

About Mark Sheppard

I am an 18-year-old Journalism and Media student at De Montfort University, Leicester. I enjoy writing, especially about sport because my interests involve football, snooker, rugby, F1 and tennis.

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