So far this summer, Leicester City have signed a backup Right Back. An exciting young RB, but hardly a blockbuster move. In fact, we’ve been pretty starved for genuine news, as we’re force-fed a diet of almost exclusively fabricated rumours about which of our players will be moving on to bigger and “better” clubs.
So it does come as almost a relief today that we’ve had actual news of a real transfer bid received: Manchester United are offering £70m for Centre Back Harry Maguire. This was immediately followed by the news that the Foxes had turned down the offer.
United probably should have expected exactly that, especially if they’ve been paying any attention whatsoever this summer (or the previous two, see: Mahrez, Riyad).
Leicester City have turned down Manchester United’s £70million bid for Harry Maguire, Sky Sports News understands.https://t.co/WA1LaysdKA— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) July 2, 2019
Even back when the media were still complaining about the fictional wages Maguire would be given after the completion of his entirely imaginary £65m transfer to Manchester City, those who actually knew what was going on at Leicester have been very clear: he’s not for sale.
With the current broadcast deal that the Premier League is bringing in, no stable, top flight team needs to sell anymore. That’s especially true for (former Premier League Champions) Leicester City, whose owners already have quite enough without the TV money.
With that said, Harry Maguire may well leave this summer, and the two Manchester clubs are certainly his most likely destinations. It’s just that when something isn’t for sale, you have to offer far more than fair value for it.
Again, our owners have been consistent and open with that throughout: it’s going to cost more than the £75m Liverpool spent on Virgil van Dijk.
Both #mcfc and #mufc have told #lcfc they’re prepared to pay £65m for Harry Maguire, I understand. Talks have been ongoing for several weeks, but a deal is no closer. Leic have no desire or need to sell, and it would take more than the £75m paid for Van Dijk to tempt them.— Rob Dorsett (@RobDorsettSky) June 25, 2019
If no club is willing to stump up £80m+ for him, he’s staying put. If they do, well, I think most would agree that’s a heavily inflated fee and, yes, it’s much more than he’s worth. In which case, we should definitely take it.
Maguire is a 26 year old England international, and a genuinely very good player. That’s why his asking price would be at least in the range of £65m, were he for sale, and that’s why this team would be better with him than without. But it’s not like we’re short on defensive options, and that money could be better spent elsewhere.
Under Rodgers, the team functioned fine with Wes Morgan and Jonny Evans. Sure, that would sacrifice the ability to play out from the back a bit, but Filip Benković returns from a very promising loan spell, while Çağlar Söyüncü has a full year of experience (and English lessons) behind him and either look good enough to play next year.
I suspect most fans would rather begin next season with a combination of those four starting than Kelechi Iheanacho, who remains one injury/suspension away from being our first choice.
He’ll go or he’ll stay, and we’ll be fine either way. While we wait, I’d suggest trying to ignore it, and focussing on the real transfer news.