Saturday, December 3, 2022

Leicester City Striker Given An Important Role At Brighton And Hove: Do The Foxes Need To Recall Him?

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Bishwaraj Bhattacharyya
Former athlete. Now a journalist hoping to cover football no matter the league or country.

Leicester City forward, Leonardo Ulloa will be returning to the King Power Stadium after finishing his loan-spell with his former club, Brighton And Hove Albion. However, speculation has been ripe over the striker’s probability of boarding the flight back to the East Midlands.

The Foxes have a ton of striking options and might not need the Argentinian back in their wage books again. However, the spell with the Seagulls has not been particularly illustrious either, with the 31-year-old scoring just once since joining the side in January.

He has not registered a Premier League goal with Albion and is below the pecking order, behind Glenn Murray. Right on Ulloa’s arrival, the latter impressed by scoring 4 in 5 matches and cemented his spot in the starting XI.

However, Murray is 34 now and is slowly entering the last stages of his playing career. His form has run both hot and cold this season and this has allowed Ulloa to slowly carve out a more important rotational role.

The Argentine will be eager to replicate his form from the 2013/14 season where he pushed Brighton into the promotion playoffs by scoring 4 in the last 6. He was only a surplus to Claude Puel’s requirements at the King Power but is a key figure in the Albion squad.

Right after Leicester’s Premier League winning season, Ulloa was demoted to just 39 appearances in three-and-a-half seasons. The frustration grew as a number of fresh signings started to make their way into the club from astronomical transfer fees, obviously questioning the abilities of the 31-year-old. This eventually forced the loan move to be sanctioned and maybe a permanent transfer should be considered by all the parties.

Ulloa is one of those old-school number nines who can attack the box and tower over defenders to win the aerial battles. His poaching instincts and his physical prowess is a proven threat in the Premier League and can always be exploited with the right service inside the penalty box.

What he lacks and probably is what devalues him so much is pace and decent technical skills. The striker is not a modern-day centre-forward who willingly runs at the opposition defenders and gets to score on the dribble.

Leicester already have that in Jamie Vardy, Shinji Okazaki and Demarai Gray. City also have Kelechi Iheanacho and Islam Slimani, the latter also being forced out with a loan move to Newcastle United.

Read More: Leicester City Chasing Manchester United Outcast: Do The Foxes Really Need Him?

It would be wise for the Foxes to start offloading the unnecessary parts, starting with Ulloa, and start reinvesting it in more defensive options.

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