Thursday, April 25, 2019

Iborra leaves Leicester for Villarreal in reported €11m deal

SoccerNews in La Liga 7 Jan 2019

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Vicente Iborra has secured a return to LaLiga after Villarreal reached an agreement with Leicester City for his permanent transfer.

The 30-year-old has signed a two-and-a-half-year deal, with Villarreal reported to being paying Leicester €11million.

Iborra joined the Foxes in July 2017 following four years with Sevilla and he impressed in flashes during his first season at the club.

Craig Shakespeare was said to be a particular fan of the Spaniard during his time in charge, but Iborra has endured several injuries that have limited his impact.

This season the physically imposing midfielder has played just eight times in the Premier League for Claude Puel’s men, with only three of those coming from the start.

In his farewell message to supporters, Iborra paid tribute to the club’s former owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who died in a helicopter crash outside Leicester’s stadium on October 27.

“It’s time to say goodbye,” he wrote on his official Twitter account. “It’s not easy for my family and me, but we feel that it’s time to come back home.

“Along the season-and-a-half, I’ve felt privileged for wearing this jersey and playing beside these great supporters. You made me feel [like] one of yours, thanks from my heart for your unconditional support.

“I don’t want to finish this letter without remembering The Boss [Srivaddhanaprabha]. We will never forget you. Thank you for everything you did for this club.”

Villarreal will hope Iborra’s arrival bolsters their midfield and helps improve their survival bid, as the Yellow Submarine are embroiled in a relegation battle.

Luis Garcia’s men are just a point above the bottom three having struggled for goals this term, another aspect of their game Iborra may be able to help with.

He scored seven goals in each of his last three seasons at Sevilla, with Unai Emery and then Jorge Sampaoli often using him in attack due to his physicality and aerial ability.

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