Could Crystal Palace's Andros Townsend make the move to Leicester City?
Transfer deadline day is approaching, with several teams keen on adding to their squads before the summer window closes.
Leicester City are the latest to declare their interest in a player, with Crystal Palace winger Andros Townsend firmly on their radar as the Foxes look to boost their attacking options.
According to the Mirror, Leicester manager Craig Shakespeare is keen to bid for the England wide-man, who has struggled to impose himself at Selhurst Park after signing for £12 million from Newcastle last January.
So will the move happen, and would Townsend be a good fit at the King Power Stadium?
Why the Future of Mahrez could be influential
Leicester’s final decision could well be influenced by the future of Algerian winger Riyad Mahrez, who has been linked with a move away from the club throughout the summer (with Serie A club Roma particularly interested).
Despite sustained speculation surrounding his future, Sky Sport Italia has suggested that Roma have now withdrawn their interest in Mahrez, with the player largely expected to remain at the King Power Stadium for at least another season.
The player himself has refused to make a public issue out of his future, while the commitment and energy that he showcased during the recent 2-0 defeat against Manchester United seemed to confirm that he is focused on his football.
Although this may seem to make the chances of Leicester moving for Townsend less likely, the latest rumours have hinted at a swap deal that could see the Foxes’ talented wideman Demarai Gray swap clubs.
The report in the Mirror, which initially suggested that Leicester would bid a straight cash fee of £27 million for Townsend, confirmed that Gray could be used as a makeweight in the transfer alongside an additional cash sum of around £10 million.
Such a move would probably come as a surprise to Leicester fans, despite the fact that the 21-year-old Gray has played predominantly as a substitute since joining the club from Birmingham in January 2016.
He has certainly impressed during his cameo appearances for the club, offering superior pace and a more potent attacking threat to the hard-working Marc Albrighton.
He certainly excelled at Old Trafford on Saturday, causing problems with his direct running while setting up a glorious chance for Andy King in the dying moments.
Despite this, a lack of game-time may encourage the youngster to consider a future away from the King Power Stadium, and in this instance Townsend would at least provide a direct replacement with his purposeful running and innate ability to score goals.
What are the chances of a deal?
With little time left to secure a deal, both parties will need to agree terms quickly if the transfer is to take place before the end of the summer window.
The retention of Mahrez may also weaken their resolve to complete a deal, while Crystal Palace manager Frank de Boer is surely focused on improving his squad with the side winless after three Premier League matches.
This may change if Gray or Townsend force a move ahead of Thursday’s deadline, or if Mahrez is the subject of a late bid that both the club and the player find it hard to turn down. We should certainly watch this space as the transfer deadline approaches, particularly with both Leicester and Palace struggling at the bottom end of the table.
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