Leicester City have been linked with a move for Burnley defender James Tarkowski ahead of the upcoming transfer window.
What’s the story?
According to Lancs Live, the Turf Moor outfit are anticipating renewed interest in their centre-back after another impressive campaign.
Rodgers needs him
The Foxes missed out on a top-four finish by a single point in the recently-concluded campaign after a final day defeat to Tottenham Hotspur.
Injuries to all of Leicester’s key centre-backs throughout the season hampered the progress of the 2016 Premier League champions, with Jonny Evans, Wesley Fofana and Caglar Soyuncu all spending significant periods on the sidelines.
Their lack of strength in depth, combined with the departure of club captain Wes Morgan, has left the Midlands outfit prioritising a new defender this summer, meaning that another move for Tarkowski is expected.
The Leicester Mercury claimed that the Rodgers’ men are favourite to secure the England international’s signature over the coming months as the Northern Irish manager looks to bolster his first team squad for next season.
Tarkowski has won many plaudits for his impressive displays since arriving at Burnley back in 2016, earing high praise from his manager after a standout performance on his debut.
“Keano (Michael Keane) often gets the story, but that’s Tarky’s first Premier League start, I think that’s outstanding, to play against someone like (Christian) Benteke, get hit by a lighter, stay focused, get the job done,” Dyche said.
“I’m not interested in talking about Keano because Tarky’s been absolutely outstanding.”
Since then, the £22.5m-rated beast has gone from strength to strength, making 182 appearances for the Lancashire side as they’ve continued to defy expectations and maintain their Premier League status.
It’s no surprise that the Burnley hierarchy are trying to convince Tarkowski to extend his current contract with the club, which is set to expire in the summer of 2022.
“We have open lines of communication with him and his agent, as we do with all the players, and as far as I’m concerned he’s a Burnley player,” Dyche recently revealed.
“Contractual situations are private and personal, or they should be, they’re often not, but he’s been fantastic. He (Tarkowski) knows my thoughts on his future here, he knows I want him here. He knows his contract is where it is, everyone knows that, but he’ll be here as far as I’m concerned, it’s simple
“If someone wants to write a cheque for an immeasurable amount then that might be different, but at the moment he’s a Burnley player, and he’s done very well again for us this season. He’s a quality player.”
It remains to be seen whether Leicester can finally land their man this time around, but with Morgan’s departure and Rodgers’ ambitious hopes, director of football Jon Rudkin must do all he can to land Tarkowski as the Foxes attempt to secure a Champions League qualification spot at the end of next season.