Leicester City announced a record loss of 92.5 million pounds for the 2021-2022 season after avoiding big money sales and securing their star players.
Since their return to the Premier League, City’s summer transfer strategy has typically included the sale of a high-profile player to one of the so-called big six. However, in the summer of 2021, City decided to keep all of their star players while adding new ones.
Leicester City only made £9.2 million from player sales, with the departure of promising young Ghanaian winger Kamal Sowah to Club Brugge being the most notable of this.
They then shelled out £67.1 million in player registration fees, as evidenced by their financial reports.
The club had high hopes for players like Patson Daka (£23 million) and Boubakary Soumare (£17 million), but they have yet to emerge as consistent starters at the top level.
Meanwhile, Ryan Bertrand and Jannik Vestergaard have seen limited action due to injury or lack of suitability, Ademola Lookman was only loaned to the team for one season, even though he was the most productive new addition. Those transfers did not go as smoothly as expected.
It’s unlikely that Leicester City will have another summer like this one, where they keep all of their best players.
Executive vice president Susan Whelan said that successful transfer dealings are crucial to the club’s future on and off the field.
The club reports a drop in revenue from £226m to £214m, primarily attributable to accounting differences between the current season and the 2020-21 campaign caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Importantly, Leicester also resisted the temptation to sell any of their star players that summer for the first time since their 2016 League triumph.
While the likes of N’Golo Kante, Danny Drinkwater, Riyad Mahrez, Harry Maguire, and Ben Chilwell have left the club in recent seasons, the 2021 FA Cup champions decided to keep the rest of their team together.
There will be short- and medium-term pressure to sell players, but with high earners such as Youri Tielemans, Caglar Soyuncu, and Ayoze Perez among several squad members out of contract in June, Leicester’s wage bill will be significantly lowered in the summer.
England international James Maddison, who could set them back a minimum of £60 million is also expected to be a target of several Premier League clubs including Tottenham Hotspur.
Manager Brendan Rodgers justified the freezing of the summer transfer window spending by citing the need to balance the books, so the club added only two players (defender Wout Faes and goalkeeper Alex Smithies).
In January, they acquired Brazilian winger Tete on loan from Ukrainian club Shakhtar Donetsk and English defender Harry Souttar from Stoke City.
Even before Saturday’s 1-0 loss at Southampton, when some fans called for manager Rodgers to be fired, the club’s form hasn’t improved and it is now only two points above the Premier League’s relegation zone.
Recently, the club’s chairman, Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha, transferred the club’s outstanding £194m debt to parent company King Power International as he converted it into equity, bringing the total debt to zero.
It is the Srivaddhanaprabha family’s second debt-to-equity conversion since they acquired the club in 2010.
What’s next for Leicester City?
Leicester hosts Chelsea this Saturday, 11th of March, 2023, at the King Power Stadium. The Foxes are currently in 15th place in the league, two points above the relegation zone.
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