According to a recent report from The Independent, Leicester City are interested in a January move for Mohamed Elneny. The midfielder currently plays his football at Premier League heavyweights Arsenal and has done so since leaving Basel back in 2016, although struggles for regular game time under new Gunners manager Unai Emery has plunged his future at the Emirates Stadium into huge doubt.
And a recent report from The Independent suggests that Claude Puel’s Leicester are eyeing up a move for the £9 million-rated outcast (as per Transfermarkt) in a bid to give him the first team football he’s not getting in North London, with the possible arrival of the Egypt international going some way to providing Puel with a huge upgrade on Foxes midfielder Nampalys Mendy.
Ultimately, 26-year-old Mendy made the move to the King Power Stadium back in 2016 after three years at French club Nice, yet he has on the whole found it difficult to command regular football at the Midlands outfit with just 32 appearances to his name in that time.
Yet most of those have come this time round under the guidance of Puel, who worked with the midfielder at Nice between 2013 and 2016, with Mendy having appeared 21 times in the Premier League for the Foxes this term, all of which have been starts.
And while there have been some decent displays from the former France Under-21 international in that time, recent weeks have seen Mendy struggle to produce the goods to suggest that an upgrade may be needed in the central midfield area, especially with Vicente Iborra having left the club, and Adrien Silva possibly following him out the exit door (as per L’Equipe).
And a move for Arsenal’s Elneny would go some way to upgrading on Mendy, as although the Egyptian hasn’t always convinced for the Gunners in the last three years, he certainly has the game to dominate midfields in the Premier League.
The 26-year-old arrived at the Emirates Stadium amid much anticipation that he could finally be the answer the Gunners’ woes in the middle of the park, and while there have certainly been glimpses of that promise during his time at the club, injuries have ultimately put pay to his hopes of nailing down a regular first team place.
In fact, the former Basel man has appeared only 40 times in the Premier League since his move to North London back in January 2016, with some niggling injuries to the calf, ankle, and hamstring seriously thwarting his chances of becoming an Arsenal regular.
And with just two league appearances this time round under Emery, his future certainly looks to be away from the Emirates Stadium – but that shouldn’t detract from what good Elneny has done at Arsenal to suggest that he could be exactly what Leicester need in the centre of the pitch.
The 26-year-old is extremely comfortable in possession both when under pressure but also when seeking to move the ball forward and launch attacks, while he is also strong in the tackle and able to screen the backline by providing much-needed protection in that midfield area.
And alongside the combative and tenacious Wilfred Ndidi, who is one of the best in the league in that position off the ball, the Egypt international could seriously flourish, and indeed provide Puel with the midfielder his side seemingly need after some tough results in recent weeks.
And with Mendy himself struggling for form in the last couple of games, Puel must look to Elneny as the perfect upgrade on the Frenchman at the King Power Stadium.
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