Leicester City has announced the signing of Portuguese midfielder Adrien Silva, pending international approval.
Silva’s former team, Sporting Lisbon, has also confirmed the sale.
“Sporting Club de Portugal informs the market that we have reached an agreement with Leicester City Football Club for the definitive transfer of the sporting and economic rights of the professional soccer player Adrien Silva.”
The fee for the 28-year-old is believed to be around £22 million. City requested an extension of the transfer deadline to complete the move, as they were also awaiting confirmation of the sale of Danny Drinkwater to Chelsea.
Leicester’s interest in Silva extends back to last summer; he even announced his intention to join the Foxes before being denied the move by his club, as they claimed he was not for sale at any price. The move will see him reunite with former Sporting teammate Islam Slimani, who made the same move on deadline day a year ago.
He figures to be the replacement for Drinkwater, as his skillset is similar to the new Chelsea man. He is a playmaking central midfielder with a solid defensive presence. He is, however, almost exactly one year older than Drinkwater.
Leicester will now have plenty of choices in midfield. Presumably, either Silva or Vicente Iborra will slot in alongside Wilfred Ndidi as the first-choice pairing. Other options will include Matty James, Andy King, and Daniel Amartey (though he has been deployed mostly as a right back recently).
Although losing Drinky will be painful for Leicester fans, the addition of Silva should ease the blow.