Leicester City midfielder Demarai Gray has completed a transfer to Bayer Leverkusen for around £ 2million.
Gray has signed a contract with the Bundesliga club until June 2022.
The midfielder had fallen out of favor under coach Brendan Rodgers and should leave the Füchse with his contract with the club, which should expire in the summer.
In a farewell message, Gray said he had “unforgettable moments” at the club, including participating in the Premier League squad in 2016 and scoring the first goal after the death of owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha and four others in a helicopter crash in October 2018.
“Today I’m saying goodbye to a wonderful club and family as this is Leicester City,” he added on Instagram.
“I’d like to thank everyone at the club who helped me become a better footballer.”
Crystal Palace and Marseille were also believed to be interested in signing Gray, and Palace boss Roy Hodgson admitted on Friday that he was “aware” of his situation.
Leverkusen believe that Gray could have an impact on the Bundesliga, as have other young English players like Jadon Sancho and Jude Bellingham, who have starred for Borussia Dortmund since moving to the top German league.
“It is a great opportunity to gain new experience in a very interesting foreign club,” Gray told the Leverkusen website.
“When the Bundesliga was the first big league to play again after the coronavirus break last year, the whole world looked here. I like German football.”
“I saw how Bayer 04 attacked, made aggressive and technical progress and dictated the game through possession. I fit in well here. I can and would like to develop here and be successful with this attractive team.”
The former Birmingham player has scored 13 goals in 169 games since joining Leicester in January 2016. Gray helped the Foxes win the 2016 Premier League under Claudio Ranieri.
“He was a really good young player for the club. He’s 24 now and he wants to be a regular somewhere,” said Leicester boss Rodgers after the move was confirmed.
“Unfortunately Harvey’s shape [Barnes] has stopped its ability to advance. He is now at the age he would like to play. He was a good boy, worked very well and hard for me, but we wish him all the best. “
Gray will be signed for the third time by Bayer Leverkusen of Great Britain in January after winning Timothy Fosu-Mensah of Manchester United and Jeremie Frimpong of Celtic.
Leicester is considering the possibility of a move for Watford midfielder Nathaniel Chalobah as they seek cover before the window closes on Monday night.
Dennis Praet is out for up to three months and Wilfred Ndidi will miss another week due to an injury. These absences have led Leicester to look into a number of potential midfield substitutes on loan.
The potential move from Hamza Choudhury to Newcastle United would be sanctioned if Leicester could make an acquisition in midfield before the transfer deadline.
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