Rising star Faiq Bolkiah could be ready for Leicester breakthrough

This article is part of Football FanCast’s In The Pipeline series, which takes a look at some of the most promising young talent either linked with clubs or emerging from their academies…

Leicester are home to a number of rising talents within football at the moment.

In the first team you have the likes of James Maddison, Ben Chilwell, Harvey Barnes and Hamza Choudhury all making an impact, but you also have a number of stars at academy level.

One of the brightest rising talents is Josh Knight, a defender, but from a more attacking point of view, they have a player with a fascinating back story.

This week 21-year-old Faiq Bolkiah signed a new contract with Leicester, extending his stay with the Foxes for a further year.

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Capped five times by Brunei, he is the captain of his national side and has grown up playing football among tigers, and comes from a family who once hired Michael Jackson for a birthday party.

This is a player who shouldn’t really have to work a day in his life. He is the nephew of the Sultan of Brunei and is the son of Prince Jefri Bolkiah.

He comes from a family who are remarkably rich. According to The Sun, their fortune is around the £15bn mark, money that goes beyond even some of the outrageous fees footballers are paid nowadays.

But beneath the surface, Bolkiah is a footballer. Nothing more, nothing less.

Having signed a new deal with Leicester, there will be no better opportunity to stake his claim. After all, the first team manager Brendan Rodgers is someone who loves to give opportunities to younger players.

At 21, he is getting to an age where he needs to start playing more regularly.

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Signed in 2016 from Chelsea having also had a trial with Arsenal when he was younger, Bolkiah is a winger who is still yet to really find his feet in the English game.

However, if Leicester are offering him new terms there must be some talent behind the glitz and glamour that he’s grown up with. Last term, he played five times in the UEFA Youth League, claiming one assist for his troubles.

So with Leicester lacking quality in a wide area, there are probably far worse solutions than testing Bolkiah out during pre-season.

Whether or not he’ll finally get his chance at senior level, however, remains to be seen.

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