Everyone knows that Kelechi Iheanacho didn’t take his Leicester City chance in Jamie Vardy’s absence – but what did the boss say?
Overall, Kelechi Iheanacho has been on fire in the Europa League, so to speak. While his form in the Premier League has evaded him – like an apparition trying to put the ball into the back of the net for Leicester City.
‘Kel’ or ‘Nacho’ as some of the Foxes fans lovingly refer to the player as because of his surname ending, is a likable chap, in my humble opinion. He’s often seen being very jovial and joking with his team-mates on social media. Then there is his devoted faith and patriotism, another staple of his online presence.
I therefore find it rather difficult to censure his efforts, in my simple capacity as an analyst of Leicester City Football Club. Even when the striker has a nightmare like he did against Crystal Palace whilst deputising for the illustrious Jamie Vardy.
I imagine it’s not east being understudy to a still functioning icon in his kingdom surrounded by devotees. Yet Iheanacho retains his confidence: the stupidly ill-advised stutter-step prior to missing his penalty is a strangely showy pantomime for someone needing to prove themselves.
Reaction from Leicester City boss
Brendan Rodgers said this after the Nigerian’s missed spot kick, among other errors:
“It is difficult. But I’ve seen his confidence improve in the time I’ve been here. It’s just really unfortunate for him [Iheanacho] today… it’s always difficult when you’re coming and you’re playing behind one of the world’s best strikers.
“He’s continued to work. He trains every single day, he’s come in and made an impact in games for us. When he’s started in the Europa League, he’s done really well.
“Today was an opportunity for him to get a goal, and it didn’t come, and that’s something as a striker you have to deal with. He’s a good boy to have around the team. I feel for him today, but I’m sure other opportunities will come and he will take them.”
Can the Foxes continue their wonderful form on the road in 2020/21, as they travel to Northumberland to face Newcastle United. Steve Bruce has been in for some criticism of late for his team’s performances. However, with dangerous men like Matt Ritchie, Callum Wilson and the unpredictable Joelinton around, Leicester cannot expect a simple victory. Brendan Rodgers is likely to revert to his strongest available side for the Magpies clash – whatever that currently is, even I can’t keep up.