Leicester Had Bid Rejected for Juventus' Merih Demiral Before Signing Wesley Fofana

Oct 24, 2020, 1:15 PM GMT+1
Merih Demiral
Leicester initially targeted Merih Demiral | Jonathan Moscrop/Getty Images

Leicester initially targeted Merih Demiral during the transfer window before turning their attentions to Wesley Fofana after their bid for the Juventus defender was rejected.

The Foxes were forced to enter the market for a new centre half having not replaced Harry Maguire during the 2019/20 transfer window, leaving Brendan Rodgers' side short on central defenders ahead of their congested Premier League and European campaigns.

Wesley Fofana
Wesley Fofana has quickly settled into life at Leicester | James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Leicester signed Fofana from St Etienne for £36m, and the teenager has already been thrown into the thick of the action following injury to Caglar Soyuncu - who has been ruled out for up to three months with a muscular injury.

Fofana has impressed during his two outings for the Foxes, but according to reports in Italy, the youngster was not the club's first choice.

Calciomercato report Leicester instead made an approach for Juventus' Demiral - a player the Foxes have been keeping tabs on since 2019 and an international teammate of Soyuncu's.

Leicester submitted a £31.5m bid for the 22-year-old, but this was instantly dismissed by the Serie A champions as they regard the centre back as 'untouchable'.

Juventus v AS Roma - Serie A
Demiral was part of Juventus' title winning side | Chris Ricco/Getty Images

Demiral only featured six times in the league for Juventus last season as the Italian giants secured their ninth successive Scudetto. However, his season was heavily interrupted by an cruciate ligament rupture that had kept him sidelined for six months.

Demiral has been capped 13 times by Turkey and partnered Leicester's Soyuncu in the heart of the national team's backline during their Nations League defeat to Hungary in September. However, Leicester fans will likely not lose too much sleep over missing out on the Juventus man after what they have seen from Fofana during his first two appearances for the club.

The 19-year-old turned in a thoroughly assured display against Zorya in the Europa League on Thursday evening - prompting former Foxes striker Gary Lineker to tweet about just how impressed he was with the young centre back.