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Forgotten Leicester City man Yohan Benalouane will hope to keep England at bay this evening

The 31-year-old Leicester defender will hope to start for Tunisia.

Mathew Nash

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England take on Tunisia this evening in their opening World Cup fixture. Whilst not many names on The Eagles of Carthage team-sheet will ring a bell there are some familiar faces. Sunderland fans will know all too well the talents of attacker Wahbi Khazri, who still remains a Black Cat.

Leicester City fans will, however, be forgiven for forgetting that one of the Tunisia players is still at the King Power. Yohan Benalouane will be hoping to make just his fifth appearance for the Tunisia national team against England this evening.

Born in France the 31-year-old had been called up by Tunisia two times previously. However, his form at Parma and Atalanta saw him on the cusp of a French call-up and he always turned down the nation of his heritage. Until March, when he finally decided to accept the call and become a Tunisian international.

Now he is fighting for his place in the starting XI, something he is used to with Leicester.

Signed from Atalanta in a deal rumoured to be worth £5.6 million he arrived on the same day as N’Golo Kante. Whilst the latter went on to help Leicester claim the title, the Tunisian has had a far less impressive run with the Foxes.

(Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

He barely featured in Leicester’s title-winning campaign, spending an unsuccessful spell on loan at Fiorentina in the second half of the campaign. His game time was so minimal he did not receive a winner’s medal.

The following season he was initially not given a squad number but he was brought in from the cold by new manager Craig Shakespeare.

But this season has again been a struggle for Benalouane. He played just one game in the Premier League last season, a 2-0 loss against West Ham in May.

Tonight his place in the starting XI, much like his Foxes team-mates and England stars Harry Maguire and Jamie Vardy, is up for debate. But he will be chomping at the bit to keep England quiet and prove a point to his parent club Leicester ahead of another season at the King Power.

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Leicester City

Three reasons James Maddison can become a star for Leicester City next season

The 21-year-old star is destined for big things next season.

Liam Thomas

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James Maddison
Photo: Getty Images

21-year-old James Maddison became Leicester City‘s third signing of the summer when he completed a £22 million move from Norwich City to the King Power Stadium.

After Riyad Mahrez completed his long-awaited move to Manchester City this week, it seems as though there is no better time than now for the talented English playmaker to come and make his mark on the Premier League.

The Foxes beat off stiff competition for the talented youngsters signature after a terrific season in the Championship that saw the attacking midfielder score 14 times and assist eight.

(Photo by Stephen Pond/Getty Images)

But will he live up to the hype? Here are three reasons why James Maddison has everything it takes to become a star for Leicester City in the 2018/19 Premier League season.

Superstar stats

Maddison was the subject of interest from all over Europe last season when in January it was confirmed he held the title of creating the most chances out of any player in the Premier League, Serie A, La Liga, Ligue 1 and Bundesliga (54). An impressive statistic for a 21-year-old and testament to the abundance of talent he has.

“James is a wonderful player who is one of the most exciting young talents in English football. He made a big contribution to Norwich City last season and I’m delighted that he has decided to make the step up to the Premier League with Leicester.”

Leicester boss, Claude Puel, speaking after Maddison completed his £22 million move.

Set piece specialist

One of Maddison’s greatest assets is his ability from dead ball situations, a skill which in the Premier League is a vital weapon for any team to have at their disposal. Expect the new Leicester number 10 to be taking over free kick duties now Riyad Mahrez has left the King Power Stadium and don’t be surprised if he bangs a few of them in next season.

Chance to fill the void Riyad Mahrez had left

Maddison has a real chance to step up and make a name for himself since Riyad Mahrez’ departure, which for a talented and ambitious youngster like himself could be the perfect remedy for something great. Maddison was voted Norwich’s Player of the Season last year which all but proves he can take a team by the scruff of the neck and make it his own; even at such a young age.

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Leicester City

Three Riyad Mahrez replacements Leicester should pursue after £60million sale

Mahrez’s move to Manchester City has left Leicester with money to spend but a big void to fill.

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Mahrez
Photo: Getty Images

After a lengthy transfer saga stretching back to January, Riyad Mahrez has finally sealed an exit from Leicester City and the Foxes now need a replacement.

Earning £60 million from Mahrez’s move to Manchester City, as per BBC Sport, Leicester have cash to spend in the market and will need to set their sights high if they are to find an adequate replacement for the Premier League winner.

Since signing for Leicester in 2014, the Algeria international scored 42 goals in 158 league appearances for the Foxes and played a key part in the club’s shock Premier League success in 2015-16, scoring 17 goals and contributing 11 assists on his way to being crowned PFA Player of the Year.

That certainly leaves Leicester with a huge void to fill but the £60m fee they earned from the 27-year-old’s departure gives them plenty to spend – and these three players could be ideal replacements.

(Photo by Jean-Francois Monier/Getty Images)

Florian Thauvin – Marseille

After a disastrous stint at Newcastle United, Florian Thauvin has excelled back in France with Marseille and is now a World Cup finalist following Les Bleus semi-final victory over Belgium on Tuesday evening – which could be the ideal end to a spectacular season.

The 25-year-old scored 22 goals and provided 17 assists in 35 Ligue 1 appearances last season, per Whoscored, while in Europe he found the net three times and contributed a further two assists in the club’s run to the Europa League final.

Thauvin’s impressive form has attracted plenty of attention, with Italian outlet StadioSport stating Arsenal are keen, but first-team football would be more regular with the Foxes and he could become a star for Claude Peul’s side.

Ryan Sessegnon – Fulham

One of the finest youth prospects within English football, Ryan Sessegnon caught the eye in Fulham’s promotion winning campaign last term after the versatile left-sided player pushed into a more attacking role for the Cottagers.

The 18-year-old’s tally of 16 goals and eight assists in the Championship brought back memories of Gareth Bale’s meteoric rise across London with Tottenham earlier in the decade, leading to widespread interest in the teenager’s services.

Arsenal, Manchester United and even Paris Saint-Germain have been linked with a move, although The Times has stated he will sign a new deal with Fulham. The Cottagers, understandably, want to keep the starlet for their return to the Premier League but the £60m Leicester received for Mahrez could allow the Foxes to make a move.

(Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

Denis Cheryshev – Villarreal

After years floating around Spanish football, spending time with Real Madrid and Valencia before sealing a permanent move to Villarreal in 2016, Denis Cheryshev finally showed his full potential at the World Cup with host nation Russia.

The 27-year-old netted four goals during Russia’s improbable run to the quarter-finals of the tournament, including a brace in the opening match against Saudi Arabia, double the amount he scored in LaLiga last season, according to Whoscored statistics.

Cheryshev now has to prove that his form in the World Cup was not just a purple patch and Villarreal may be tempted into a sale if Leicester propose a bid. While he may not be a long-term star for the Foxes, his arrival could allow Demarai Gray to continue his development before taking the reigns in the coming years.

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Three summer signings to enhance Liverpool’s Premier League title credentials

These three signings could instantly throw the Reds into contention for the Premier League title.

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Liverpool
Photo: Getty Images

For Liverpool fans the Premier League crown remains their most sought-after trophy but under the stewardship of Jurgen Klopp there is a real sense that the club can finally add the elusive piece of silverware to their trophy cabinet.

The German boss has kicked off his summer recruitment drive in decent fashion by signing Naby Keita from Red Bull Leipzig and Fabinho from Monaco, with more signings expected to arrive before the big kick-off in August.

Several positions remain problematic for the Reds and if they are serious about toppling current champions Manchester City next season they must ensure that the right players are added to the squad this summer.

Reaching the Champions League final at the end of last season does make Liverpool a pretty big attraction for any potential recruits during the transfer window and Klopp will be hoping to get the signatures of some more stellar players.

Here, we look at three players that Liverpool must sign to enhance their title credentials…

(Photo by Fabrice Coffrini/Getty Images)

Harry Maguire

The England central defender has seen his stock rise no end after a magnificent World Cup where his performances have helped his country to the last four of the tournament.

Leicester City will face a real fight to keep hold of the no-nonsense defender following the competition and it remains to be seen whether one of the top clubs can entice him out of the King Power Stadium.

Reports in the Liverpool Echo last week claimed that ex-Reds’ defender Phil Thompson has urged his former club to sign the Leicester man following his scintillating tournament, and it now remains to be seen whether an advance will be made after the World Cup.

Jan Oblak

The signing of a world class goalkeeper remains the primary target for Liverpool this summer, particularly following Loris Karius’ high profile mistakes in the Champions League final at the end of May.

Oblak has established himself as one of the world’s very best goalkeepers during his four years with Atlético Madrid and the Slovenian international would represent a major summer coup for Liverpool, if a deal can be struck.

Tempting the 25-year-old away from the Wanda Metropolitano might prove tricky but it certainly wouldn’t hurt for the Reds to try and aim high in their quest for a new custodian.

(Photo by Christopher Lee/Getty Images)

Wilfried Zaha

The 25-year-old was one of the Premier League’s standout performers last season and he has really revived his career under Roy Hodgson’s management at Crystal Palace.

According to a report in The Mirror, Everton are interested in signing the Ivory Coast international this summer but he would represent a pretty solid signing for Liverpool too.

Zaha’s pace would be a serious attribute in Liverpool’s high pressing style of football and his arrival would signify a solid statement of intent by the Reds.

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