Exclusive: Leicester City signing Patson Daka more ‘Vardy-esque’ rather than a Haaland regen; top six may not regret missing out – Tom Middler

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Signing for Leicester City earlier this week, Brendan Rodgers’ men are thought to have conducted a transfer coup in snapping up RB Salzburg hitman Patson Daka, with top Premier League outfits, including Liverpool, reportedly holding an interest.

Speaking to Austria-based UEFA reporter Tom Middler, co-founder of The Other Bundesliga podcast, CaughtOffside explored the Foxes’ latest addition in the summer window and how much of a good fit the Zambian will be in the English top-flight.

Having observed Daka in the Austrian Bundesliga, do you feel it will be a smooth transition for the player to the Premier League and Leicester City?

I think it could be a tough transition, and I’d expect that he will spend a bit of time on the bench before he’s a regular Premier League feature. It’s definitely a big step to make, especially to Leicester who have high ambitions.

He’s a good buy, well worth a go, but in Austria the defences can be quite ponderous, and the better teams set up the defence with quite an attacking focus, perhaps with some slower, older centre-backs, so for a pacey striker like Daka it has simply been easy pickings. He’s not going to get that in the Premier League!

What kind of player will Leicester be getting in Daka – what are his strengths? Areas he needs to improve in his game?

Leicester will be getting a player, in some ways, that they recognise as he could be described as Vardy-esque in one way at least, and that is that he loves a direct dash in behind the defence.

It worked perfectly at Salzburg as he can just hang on the defender’s shoulder when the team are defending, and as soon as Salzburg won the ball back they would often look to play him in behind in a matter of seconds, and his pace took care of the rest.

Daka on the ball
Patson Daka looks an exciting signing for Leicester City

It will be tougher but that could certainly prove effective in the PL too, and his finishing was pretty lethal here in the Bundesliga too.

Is this a player the traditional top four Premier League clubs will regret not moving for?

In terms of weaknesses it was hard to spot in Austria really, he was at the forefront of the best team, and he was so reliable.

He often struck late on in games once opponents tired, so perhaps he was not always as aggressive as other strikers at forcing his way into a game if it turned into an all-out battle.

He’d wait for the game to come to him, and it often did! He’s also not such a bully in the box as Haaland was before him. He’s not quite the all-round forward that Haaland was, so perhaps if the game doesn’t suit him so much he will be a fair bit less effective.

In that regard it’s probably a good fit that Leicester have bought him, and I’d tip him to do well in the end, although I’m not sure the rest of the top 5 or 6 will be ruing the day that they passed him up either. I’m looking forward to finding out, and I wish him well in England!

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