Why Bordeaux’s Malcom could be the perfect replacement for Mahrez at Leicester
There was an air of inevitability surrounding Riyad Mahrez’s future at the club after the Algerian’s stunning performances guided Leicester City to their very first Premier League title. After failing to grant his wish for almost two years, the Foxes have finally sold Riyad Mahrez to Manchester City. Pep Guardiola has signed Mahrez for a reported fee of around £60million.
The Algerian will further strengthen Guardiola’s attacking setup as the manager bids to become the first manager to win consecutive titles since the days of Sir Alex Ferguson. But taking Leicester’s perspective into account, the club are going to have to immediately replace their talisman. Mahrez was one of the Foxes’ most influential players over the last few years.
Leicester manager Claude Puel could turn to Bordeaux midfielder Malcom. The Brazilian has been making headlines in the Ligue 1 after his impressive rise with the club. Malcom is a skilled attacking midfielder who possesses all the samba qualities to become one of the best in the world. The Brazilian is ridiculously fast on the ball.
He generally operates as a central attacking midfielder but Malcom is also capable of playing on either wing. His ability on the ball is unquestionable, with the midfielder’s surging runs proving to be a handful for opposition defenders.
Malcom made a total of 32 appearances in the Ligue 1 last season, scoring 12 goals and providing 7 assists. The 21-year-old is also excellent at taking long-range shots, scoring a number of goals from distance this season.
He’s also got good set-piece ability. The 21-year-old is also brilliant with his passing range, averaging a pass success rate of 82.1% in the league last year. The Brazilian has also represented his nation at the Under 20 and Under 23 level but is yet to make it to the senior side.
He would be a great addition to the Leicester side who are in dire need of a new attacking midfielder. With Mahrez’s departure, Leicester will face a real lack of creativity in the midfield and Malcom could solve that dilemma. There’s no doubt that he will one day become one of the best midfielders out there.
There’s a Neymar-esque feel about his story. Claude Puel might as well sign him right now, when the player might be available for a much affordable fee. He may not be a like-to-like replacement for Mahrez but the Brazilian has all the potential and traits to become even better.