The Lowdown: Soyuncu out of contract
The Turkey international has been a strong performer for the Foxes, making 125 appearances and being dubbed “the best” defender in the league after Virgil van Dijk in 2020 by Manchester City’s Ilkay Gundogan.
However, Soyuncu’s current Leicester contract expires at the end of the season, and he has only appeared in the league once this term, falling down the pecking order under Brendan Rodgers amid a lengthy injury during the autumn.
He has duly been linked with an exit from the King Power Stadium in 2023, with one club believed to be firmly in the lead to snap him up.
The Latest: Villa in the mix?
Taking to Twitter, Romano claimed that Villa were keen on signing Soyuncu and have made contact over a possible move, although it looks as though Atletico Madrid may be about to land him instead.
The Italian tweeted:
“Atletico Madrid are close to complete the signing of Caglar Soyuncu for 2023. Deal not done or signed yet but negotiations are advanced, waiting to get it sealed as soon as possible.
“Aston Villa and AS Roma had also contacts for Soyuncu but Atleti are close.”
The Verdict: No massive loss
While Soyuncu was in Premier League team of the season contention in 2019/20, his lack of minutes this term suggests that he has declined since then, a theory backed up by his diminishing WhoScored performance ratings.
There is an argument to be made that the 26-year-old, who has earned a WhoScored rating of 6.18 so far this season, is no better than the likes of Tyrone Mings (6.54) and Ezri Konsa (6.46) and therefore wouldn’t be an upgrade at centre-back.
Unai Emery may see Soyuncu as a good squad option, but realistically Villa need to be looking at stronger defensive signings if they are to rise up the table.