Why cutting all ties with Rachid Ghezzal would be good for Leicester City
According to claims from Italian outlet Tutto Mercato, as cited by Leicestershire Live, Leicester City winger Rachid Ghezzal, who is currently out on loan at Fiorentina in the Italian Serie A, wants to put a full stop to his career at the King Power Stadium with a permanent move to La Viola.
That is according to the 27-year-old’s agent, Theofilos Karasavvidis, who claims that his client has taken time to acclimatize to his new surroundings in Italy after a disappointing debut season at Leicester the last term (Tuttomercato h/t Leicestershire Live).
Karasavvidis, though, has admitted that Ghezzal might have to do a lot more if he is genuinely interested in securing a permanent transfer to La Viola next summer (Tuttomercato h/t Leicestershire Live), with the Algerian only managing to establish himself in a bit-part role under manager Vincenzo Montella.
Ghezzal has only made a total of 5 appearances for Fiorentina in the Serie A till date, featuring only once in the starting XI. He is yet to register a single goal or an assist in 105 minutes of first-team football.
The Italian outfit initially paid a loan fee of £275,000 to sign Rachid Ghezzal on a season-long deal until the end of the ongoing campaign, with La Viola holding the right to exercise an option to buy for a fee of £9million next summer (h/t Leicestershire Live).
Born in France to parents of Algerian descent, Ghezzal established himself as a useful left-footed winger at Lyon and Monaco earlier in his career before coming through the door at Leicester City last summer for a fee of £10million.
A left-footed wide player, Ghezzal arrived at Leicester as a player in a mould similar to Riyad Mahrez, who sealed a big-money move to Man City before the start of the previous campaign.
Given Mahrez’s heroics in the Foxes’ incredible Premier League triumph in the 2015-16 season, the 27-year-old had big boots to fill in.
However, Ghezzal failed miserably to make any kind of impact. In fact, his modest returns of 14 goals and 20 assists in 119 appearances for Lyon and 2 goals in 35 appearances for Monaco does not do him any favours either.
Ghezzal’s future looked in jeopardy after he made managed only 8 starts in the Premier League under Claude Puel. He slipped even further down the pecking order, following the appointment of Brendan Rodgers.
Unsurprisingly, the 27-year-old became surplus to requirements as soon as the Foxes completed a big-money deal to acquire the services of Ayoze Perez from Newcastle United.
Now, with Leicester City racking up the goals and threatening to disrupt the established top-six order in the Premier League, there seems to be no way back for Rachid Ghezzal into the first-team fold.
The Foxes can certainly do with another top-quality winger to compete with the likes of Marcus Albrighton, Demarai Gray and Harvey Barnes for a place in the playing XI but Ghezzal’s future at the club looks well and truly over.
It might be harsh to judge his standards based on his limited involvement in the Premier League last season but there was hardly any evidence to suggest that Ghezzal could possibly have done the Foxes any favours.
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All in all, his failure to make an impact on his loan spell at Fiorentina is another reminder that Leicester did the right thing by getting him off the books this summer.
While such meagre returns might not be enough to warrant a permanent switch to Fiorentina at the end of the season, the Foxes need to find a way to cut all ties with him.