Leicester boss looking to non-league for new Premier League star

Leicester City

Having found Foxes star Jamie Vardy in non-league football, Nigel Pearson is adamant that more players are good enough to play in the Football League.

27-year old Vardy made history in 2012, when his widely reported move from Fleetwood Town saw him become the first £1 million non-league footballer.

His transfer, which was reported to be worth up to £1.7 million with add ons, came off the back of an incredible season with Fleetwood, in which the forward netted an incredible 31 goals in 36 games.

Whilst the step up to the Football League could be seen as too hard for many players, Vardy has taken his chance in incredible fashion, scoring 20 goals in 64 appearances for the Foxes, helping them storm their way to the Championship.

And Vardy completed the final step of his incredible journey, making his Premier League debut as a substitute against Arsenal last month.

Whilst many managers would be proud to have found one diamond in the rough, Nigel Pearson is confident that many more exist in the depths of non-league football, and he is keen to explore all options before him in the transfer market.

“There are still players who have the potential, I am sure of that," Pearson told the Leicester Mercury.

“Clubs need to be looking in all different markets other than the division you are in.

“That’s important but the financial constraints of a lot of clubs mean they may not have the capacity to have a recruitment policy which can cover all the divisions.

“Having come from a non-league background myself, there were a number of players who made the transition from leagues lower than the Conference into league football in the 80s and 90s.

“Whether it will go full circle, or not, I don’t know. It was probably more common in those days because the influx of foreign players came about in the mid-90s.

“There are lots of big questions about the development of English players. Opportunity is one thing but players have got to be good enough. You have got to have a clear picture of what you are trying to achieve with your recruitment.”

Pearson made the jump from non-league to professional football himself as player, signing for Shrewsbury Town in Division Two - the equivalent of the Championship - from Heanor Town in 1981.

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