Leicester City

Leicester close to agreeing deal for Lille's Boubakary Soumare

Robbie Copeland
Leicester are closing in on Soumare
Leicester are closing in on Soumare / Marcio Machado/Getty Images

Leicester have made an opening offer for Lille midfielder Boubakary Soumare, with the two clubs close to agreeing a fee in the region of €25m (£21.5m).

The Foxes are on the lookout for midfield reinforcements as they prepare for the 2021/22 season - where they hope they will return to the Champions League.

They've been linked with Arsenal's Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Bologna's Mattias Svanberg and a number of other midfielders in the past, but a report from Foot Mercato last week appeared to suggest Soumare is their main target.

The rumours appeared to be confirmed when Fabrizio Romano jumped on the story, jumping on the back of Soumare's international teammate and Leicester defender Wesley Fofana. He replied to one of his tweets with an egg-timer emoji, appearing to suggest the deal is imminent.

Fofana has since deleted the tweet (probably after an earful from the club's PR team), but the story has continued to snowball, and now RMC Sport's Mohamed Bouhafsi is claiming that a deal is closer than ever to being struck.

He claimed that Leicester have now put forward their first offer, worth around €25m. He adds that Soumare has already 'given his consent' to the Foxes over a transfer.

Earlier reports in France suggested that talks between the clubs are going well, and given that Soumare is out of contract in 2022, it seems likely that this offer won't be too far off the mark.

Soumare has been a key part of the Lille team who are just four points away from winning Ligue 1 for the first time since 2011. He's made 41 appearances for them in total this season, and appears to have significantly improved his game from a year ago when he was linked with Newcastle and Arsenal.

At just 22, he seems on the face of it to be a serious coup for Leicester, and brings European experience to the table having played 14 times for Lille in the Champions League and Europa League.