• Friday, July 12, 2024
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Leicester City sign Nigerian-born defender Caleb Okoli

Caleb-Okoli

Leicester City have confirmed the signing of Italian defender of Nigerian descent Caleb Okoli from Serie A side Atalanta.

Caleb, who represented Italy at the 2023 European U21 Championship, has signed a five-year contract and will join the Foxes for the 2024/25 Premier League season.

Expressing his excitement, Caleb described joining Leicester as a significant opportunity and praised the club as one of the best in the world.

“I think now is the right moment for me to make a step forward and a very big one. I’m very happy with the choice I made, so I’m very excited to start in the Premier League,” Okoli told Leicester’s official webpage.

“Now I’m here in Leicester, I’m feeling ready to start with my new team. The Premier League is the best league in the world. Leicester is a beautiful club, an important club, and the two combined together, so I took this opportunity to come and express myself in the Premier League.”

Born in Vicenza, Italy, Okoli joined Atalanta in the summer of 2015 and won the National Youth Super Cup (Primavera) with the Under-19s in 2019. He spent the 2020/21 season on loan at SPAL in Serie B, making 16 league appearances and scoring once in a 2-1 victory over Lecce.

Okoli made his Serie A debut for Atalanta in August 2022, featuring in a 2-0 win against Sampdoria. During the 2022/23 campaign, he made 17 appearances, contributing to Atalanta’s fifth-place finish and UEFA Europa League qualification.

In September 2023, he joined newly promoted Serie A club Frosinone on a season-long loan, where he made 37 appearances in all competitions, further enhancing his reputation.

Atalanta also confirmed Okoli’s transfer to Leicester City. Both La Dea and the Foxes made official statements on Tuesday. “Atalanta BC announce the permanent move of footballer Memeh Caleb Okoli to Leicester City FC: the 22-year-old centre-back joins the Foxes after having spent the previous Serie A season on loan at Frosinone Calcio,” said the Serie A side. “The Club wish Caleb all the best for his future endeavours.”

Leicester City manager Steve Cooper will be eager to integrate Okoli into the squad as they continue their preparations for the upcoming season, with the Italian defender bringing valuable experience and skill to the Foxes’ backline.