Leicester City are reported to be close to a deal for Sporting Lisbon’s Islam Slimani, having been strongly linked to the striker since his starring role for Algeria at the World Cup.
According to A Bola, Leicester are set to make an €8 million bid, with add-ons which could see the fee rise another €2 million, as the club looks to bolster their strike-force ahead of their top-flight return.
The 26-year-old didn’t travel with the squad to Egypt for their pres-season matchup against Al Ittihad and club officials are said to open to allowing him to leave for a fee in the region of what the Premier League side will offer.
Slimani moved to Sporting just last summer from CR Belouizdad, where his eight goals in 26 appearances helped the Portuguese outfit to a second-place finish in the Primeira Liga.
Going on to score twice during Algeria’s impressive run to the World Cup’s last-16, the 24-times capped international’s performances on the big stage helped further boost his profile and have seen a host of English top-flight sides linked to his services.
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The likes of West Ham United, Crystal Palace, Everton and Newcastle United have all reportedly been courting his signature over the past month, the former club in particular, but Nigel Pearson’s side now look set to win the race for the Sporting marksman.
Having already added Brighton & Hove Albion’s Leonardo Ulloa for a club record £8 million this summer, Slimani would join an impressive group of attackers at Leicester which also features David Nugent, Chris Wood and Jamie Vardy.
With previous arrivals Marc Albrighton, Jack Barmby, Ben Hamer and Mattew Upson all brought in on free transfers, the club had also looked to add Watford’s Troy Deeney, but a £10 million-plus asking price has so far proved a stumbling block.
Returning to the Premier League after a 10-year absence, the Foxes are clearly targeting some ambitions additions but, after romping to the Championship title in 2013-14, whether they will ultimately prove enough to prevent the squad from going straight back down remains to be seen.