Caleb Okoli

‘Bring Quality To The Team’ – Okoli’s Hopes For Season Ahead

Caleb Okoli says he is ready to attack the next challenge of his career head on after signing for Leicester City this week.
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The young Italian arrives from Atalanta having made a name for himself as an imposing centre-back who will further bolster the Foxes’ defensive ranks. The Vicenza-born defender’s first days coincided with the opening week of pre-season, allowing the squad to come back together and work under new Manager Steve Cooper.

“It’s amazing,” the centre-back commented on joining the Club. “I’m very happy and can’t wait to start. It is an incredible club. I’ve been here (in the UK) for a few days, so I’ve had time to settle. I’ve already met some players and the coach; I spoke a little bit with them. I was a little bit nervous but then I met them and I’m very happy now. They were all happy to see me.

“It will be a good pre-season; we have a lot of work. We have to start and know each other better. I think I’m quite a good and strong defender and I’m fast so hopefully I can bring more of that quality to this team. It’s a big step but with the team and the staff and the coach, they will help me to do my best.”

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Caleb Okoli

Okoli has fond memories of a previous visit to Filbert Way while with his former side, as well as an iconic moment in the Club’s history. He is now savouring the opportunity of heading back out onto the pitch as a Foxes player this campaign, in front of the Blue Army.

The 22-year-old recalled: “I’ve been there, five years ago when we had a friendly match and coming back again it was very incredible. The stadium is beautiful. I can’t wait to jump on it. The stadium is excellent, it’s also an incredible training ground, all the environment is good.

“I remember when the Club won the Premier League some years ago, it was great, it was an incredible moment. The team was very good. I’m ready to see all the fans. I’m very excited to be a Leicester City player. I’ve already received a lot of messages from the Leicester fans and I cannot wait to see them at King Power Stadium and play there.”

Spending the majority of his fledging career in Italy’s top two divisions, featuring more than 100 times across those competitions, Okoli has taken many learnings from last term in particular, which was crucial to preparing him for this move.

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Caleb Okoli

“I spent two years in Serie B in Italy,” the centre-back explained. “That has helped me to gain more experience in my young age. I also had two years in Serie A with Atalanta and Frosinone.

“I’m very glad for this team because they grew me and they gave me a lot of experience. The past year I played a lot of games. I think that has helped a lot, I learned so much.

“I think it was the right moment to make a different 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. Now I’m here in Leicester I’m really ready to start with my new team.

“It was the right opportunity and it’s very important for me. 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.”

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