Leicester City’s Nigerian trio of Wilfred Onyinyen Ndidi, Kelechi Iheanacho and Ahmed Musa were all aboard the club’s official flight that left England for Austria, where The Foxes will hold the next lap of their pre-season programme.
Despite initial speculation that Ndidi, Iheanacho and Musa would be excluded from the travelling squad, due to their recent exertions with the Super Eagles at this year’s World Cup, all three were aboard, as the team flew out to Austria in continuation of their plans for the upcoming 2018/19 season.
A major talking point is Musa, who has become summer transfer target number one, after scoring a brace of goals for Nigeria at the World Cup, but has had a big-money bid from a club in Saudi Arabia rejected by the former English Premier League champions.
Consequently, the former Kano Pillars, VV Van Venlo of Holland and CSKA Moscow of Russia attacker, who has also been linked with Galatasaray of Turkey, flew to Austria on the Leicester flight alongside his compatriots, Ndidi and Iheanacho.
Ironically, though, Musa could still come under the bright spotlight of Galatasaray while in Austria, as Leicester will battle another Turkish team, Akhisarspor on Wednesday and then face Udinese of Italy on Saturday.
The Foxes’ journey to Austria began on Monday afternoon, when they flew out to Kalgenfurt airport.
After a short bus ride to their hotel, the squad settled for the evening, and Claude Puel’s squad are now settled in the south of Austria, where they will prepare for the friendlies.
Players who featured in the early knockout stages of the World Cup are scheduled to meet up with their Leicester team-mates this week after being given extra time off following their exploits in Russia.
Kasper Schmeichel is due to join up with the squad despite the growing speculation about his future and interest from Chelsea and Roma.
Schmeichel’s penalty heroics were unable to stop Denmark being eliminated in a shoot-out by eventual finalists Croatia.
Japan’s Shinji Okazaki is also expected to return after their last-gasp heartbreak against Belgium in the second round, but Iheanacho, Musa and Ndidi crashed out earlier in the group stage.
They all will now face Akhisarspor at Stadion Villach Lind on Wednesday (5pm BST kick-off) before a clash with Udinese at Wörthersee Stadion comes on Saturday (2pm BST).
A day of training will follow on Tuesday, before Puel’s men aim to build on their last outing – a 1-4 win at Meadow Lane over Notts County on Saturday.
They will return in time to put finishing touches to preparations for the season before opening their Premier League campaign against Manchester United on Friday, August 10.