Why Leicester City did the right thing by offloading Rachid Ghezzal
According to reliable Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio, Leicester City have loaned out Rachid Ghezzal to Fiorentina for the remainder of the 2019/20 campaign.
A product of the Lyon academy, Rachid Ghezzal broke out with the senior side in 2015, scoring 10 goals and supplying nine assists across 37 appearances.
A free transfer to AS Monaco followed in 2017 but he found most of time on the bench. Yet, the speedy winger bagged two goals and four assists in 26 Ligue 1 games.
That saw Leicester City come calling last year and sign the French-born Algerian as a replacement for his national teammate, Riyad Mahrez. But he hardly started games for the Foxes last season, managing only a goal in 19 Premier League appearances. In all, Ghezzal just managed three goals across all competitions and his poor performances drew massive criticism from the King Power Stadium faithful.
It didn’t come as a surprise when the tricky winger was left out of Algeria’s squad for the 2019 African Cup of Nations. And likewise, eyebrows haven’t been raised following his exit from Leicester. Brendan Rodgers will be relieved to get the Algerian temporarily off the books for another year.
Under Rodgers, Ghezzal had made just two Premier League appearances last season—both as a substitute. In fact, he rarely made the bench as Rodgers favoured the likes of Harvey Barnes, Demarai Gray, James Maddison and Marc Albrighton ahead of the Algerian.
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Ghezzal never really adapted to the fast-paced nature of the Premier League. Of course, there were glimpses of his talent but in the games he played for the Foxes he drifted in and out, showing hardly any consistency required to cement a place in the team.
Ever since his move to England, the ex-Monaco star became a peripheral figure, sometimes not affecting the game in any way.
Hence, Leicester have done the right thing by offloading Ghezzal from their books on a temporary basis as the Algerian didn’t look any closer being Mahrez’s replacement.
The Foxes will just hope he performs well at Fiorentina and seals a permanent switch next year.