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Adrien Silva can’t get a game for Leicester after all they did to sign him

Sunday 25th November 2018
Adrien Silva, Leicester and Portugal midfielder
Adrien Silva, Leicester and Portugal midfielder

Leicester City manager Claude Puel recently revealed to Leicestershire Live that Adrien Silva could be brought in from the cold after the international break with Foxes fixtures piling up in December.

The 29-year-old's hardly kicked a ball this season and may be considering his future at the King Power Stadium if his situation fails to change before the January transfer window opens. December could be a big month for the Portuguese.

During his short tenure as Leicester boss, Craig Shakespeare went to extreme lengths to secure Silva's eligibility for the 2017/18 campaign. On the other hand, Claude Puel has no desire to play him at all.

Botched transfer

Leicester were forced to wait until January 2018 to play Silva after FIFA ruled his 2017 transfer was completed 14 seconds outside the summer transfer window. City appealed but had no luck in reversing the decision. They were forced to make do without Silva for the first four months of the season.

Finally eligible in the new year, Silva struggled for form. No playing time for half a season inevitably affects match fitness and overall sharpness. He was eased back into proceedings with two substitute appearances in January.

He became a regular from February onwards but continued to struggle. A disappointment for most of his 16 appearances last season, Silva found himself on the winning side a mere five times. After starting the 2018/19 campaign in similar fashion, Puel wasted little time dropping him.

Silva's claimed only four appearances across the board this term, last in the EFL Cup against Wolverhampton Wanderers in mid-September. In the Premier League, the midfielder failed to make the matchday squad in Leicester’s last six games. He hasn’t been given any top-flight minutes since August. He couldn’t be lower down the pecking order if he was a woodpecker trapped in a well. He was forced to deny rumours he was leaving City for his former club Sporting earlier in the campaign.

Stiff competition

Puel appears to have run out of patience for Silva. Vindicated in his decision to favour the likes of Wilfried Ndidi and Nampalys Mendy in the deep-lying midfield role, the Frenchman hasn't given it a second thought. Ndidi's played every minute of every league game this season. Mendy featured for the full 90 minutes in 10 of Leicester’s last 11 outings.

The Leicester boss expressed his pleasure with the pair. 

Since the beginning, we have had most of the time (Wilfred) Ndidi and (Papy) Mendy. Both are fantastic in the midfield, working hard, giving the stability in the team.

Puel’s comments about December will be most important to Silva, however.

We need to have all the quality of the different players (in December because) we will have a lot of games. 

If Puel keeps his word, Silva’s Leicester career could be resurrected. Conversely, if he remains on the periphery when the winter window opens, it’s difficult to see him staying.

Tottenham and Everton were linked with a move before he opted for Leicester in 2017. Only time will tell if either club would renew their interest should he be made available. Sporting CP could yet bring the midfielder back to the Estádio José Alvalade, too. Silva shouldn’t be short of offers.

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Crippy Cooke

Crippy is a long-suffering Aston Villa supporter and weekly football accumulator enthusiast.

Stealing a living, the balding 27-year-old boasts a wealth of writing experience - Telegraph, Independent, Huffington Post, Zoo Magazine, Daily Mail, ITV Football, MSN Sport, Yahoo Sport, London 24 and Bleacher Report.

Total articles: 319

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