Leicester City have recalled young attacker Harvey Barnes. The 21-year-old has starred for West Brom in the Championship this season, scoring nine goals and creating six assists. Barnes’ nine goals are more than any Leicester player this season. Only Jamie Vardy and James Maddison have scored more than twice this season.
Harvey Barnes Recalled by Leicester
Why Did Claude Puel Recall Barnes?
Harvey Barnes could feature as soon as Saturday for Leicester, who host Southampton. Barnes’ preferred position is behind the striker. However, with James Maddison filling this role, Barnes is more likely to feature in a wider area. With Demarai Gray and Rachid Ghezzal struggling for form this season, it is no surprise that Claude Puel has recalled Barnes. The move was made more likely by the departure of Fousseni Diabate on loan earlier this week.
Whether Barnes manages to make an impact for Leicester remains to be seen. Irrespective of his on-field success, the move further highlights Claude Puel’s desire to give young players game time.
Barnes will become the third academy graduate to break into the first team in recent seasons. Ben Chilwell is an established first-team starter whilst Hamza Choudhury has impressed in recent weeks. As well as blooding in academy products, Puel has significantly lowered the age of the squad. With Wilfred Ndidi, James Maddison and Demarai Gray (all 22) key first-team players, Leicester have the foundations in place to build around for the next decade.
Bad Timing for West Brom
The move is a hammer blow for West Brom’s promotion hopes; Harvey Barnes is the side’s third-top goalscorer and joint-top assist provider. With West Brom sitting in the play-off positions, just three points from an automatic promotion spot, manager Darren Moore will be keen to bring in a replacement quickly. The news couldn’t have come at a worse time for the Baggies, who are set to play second-placed Norwich over the weekend.