If the word on the street is to be believed, Leicester City are on the cusp of pulling off a rather impressive signing.
According to Portuguese newspaper A Bola (via), the Foxes have beaten off the chasing pack and struck a deal to land Porto wing-back Ricardo Pereira.
Pereira is reportedly also on Arsenal’s list of summer targets, but Leicester have “anticipated” the competition by offering the 24-year-old a long contract with a “luxury salary”.
As far as the fee is concerned, Pereira was known to have had a release clause of €25million last summer, but that is said to have risen to €35million as he enters the final year of his Porto contract.
That said, it’s not mentioned whether or not Leicester have had to trigger it to advance their negotiations.
The Portuguese international played under Claude Puel at French side Nice as a younger man, which is said to be a considerable factor in his willingness to swap the Estadio do Dragao for the King Power, with A Bola concluding that there is a “‘extremely high probability margin” of the deal going through.
If so… wow. That’s one holy heck of a coup for Puel and the chaps – one to get genuinely excited by.
Pereira has been one of Porto’s best and most consistent performers this season, and is clearly capable of mixing it at a much higher level. Whether Leicester proves to be a stepping stone on the way remains to be seen.
Rated at roughly the same price point at the time, it was said that Tottenham were keen to bring him in as a direct replacement for Kyle Walker before they went and signed Serge ‘Permanent Liability’ Aurier.