Man Utd, Chelsea dealt hammer blow as centre-back target signs new five-year-deal at Prem club

Ndidi, Fofana, Evans, Iheanacho, Leicester, 2021

Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal centre-back target Wesley Fofana has dealt the Premier League big guns a big blow by signing a new five-year deal at Leicester.

The France Under-21 international has not made a single appearance this season after suffering a fractured fibula and damaged ankle ligaments during a pre-season friendly against Villarreal.

However, he’s on the brink of a comeback and Leicester have moved to tie Fofana down to a new deal.

After handing James Justin a new contract last month, the Foxes have now secured Fofana’s long-term future in a bid to ward off any potential suitors.

The 21-year-old is expected to be included in the Europa Conference League squad to face Rennes on Thursday. And Foxes Brendan Rodgers is just delighted to have him back.

He said: “It just brings the team to a new dimension. This is a top player, no question. I’ve got absolutely no doubt in this boy.

“You watch the top level of the game and players have devilment. They can be the nicest guys in the world. But on the field they have an edge, and Wesley has that. Like Jamie Vardy, he has no respect on the field – in the nicest possible way.

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“It was a massive loss for us when he got injured. The other guys have filled in manfully and done the best they can, but you’ve seen what happens to a team like Liverpool when they are missing Virgil Van Dijk and Joel Matip.

“When we are missing Jamie Vardy and two centre-halves like Jonny [Evans] and Wesley, with all due respect to a club like us, that’s a big difference.”

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Fofana return could turn Leicester’s season

Without Fofana, Leicester have been shipping goals all season. However, with their star defender back, Rodgers is hopeful he can shore things up again.

As for interest from Premier League rivals, that is unlikely to go away – even if Fofana has extended his deal.

Although there is no mention of an exit clause for a set amount in the new deal, there is every likelihood that one may have been added. There is also every chance that figure will be incredibly high, in order to keep predators away.

Leicester spent £36.5million on Fofana in 2020. He has gone on to make 38 appearances for the club without scoring.

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