Leicester v Villa: Predicted and preferred Starting XI

Ricardo Pereira of Leicester City celebrates with teammates Timothy Castagne and James Maddison (Photo by Paul Harding/Getty Images)
Ricardo Pereira of Leicester City celebrates with teammates Timothy Castagne and James Maddison (Photo by Paul Harding/Getty Images) /

Leicester City host Midlands rivals Aston Villa as the club engage their first match in four years without Brendan Rodgers. Here is our starting XI.

The King Power club are without Brendan Rodgers, so what effect that should have on the starting XI is unknown. On the one hand, we could see a revolution with players we have not seen much of starting, but on the other it could just as easily be a stability XI the same as our last.

In terms of injuries/absences, we know that Jonny Evans could make a return, where Youri Tielemans, Jannik Vestergaard, Ryan Bertrand, James Justin, and Dennis Praet are certain not to feature. Otherwise, The Foxes have a full league squad. There is no excuse for a weak lineup.

Predicted Leicester City XI

I feel we shall not see a revolution in absence of the Northern Irish coach. Instead, I think a mildly altered starting XI featuring the same system and general group which played against Aston Villa prior will be utilised.

Daniel Iversen will likely start in goal, with a backline of Victor Kristiansen, Wout Faes, Harry Souttar, and Timothy Castagne. In midfield, Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall, James Maddison, and I should expect Wilfred Ndidi, although Papy Mendy might be preferred ahead of the Nigerian anchorman. Up front, Harvey Barnes, Kelechi Iheanacho, and Ricardo Pereira.

Tete has not performed to his initial standards for a while, likely due to the malaise in squad confidence. I would take the Brazilian out of the spotlight for the start and bring him on as an impact sub later in the fixture. Although we have few other options anyway.

A typical 4-3-3: we can expect standard possession-based football mixed with impactful counter-attacking long balls from Souttar and Iversen to find one of our explosive wingers, or to land ahead of the defensive line for Iheanacho.

Preferred XI

I hope for only a minor alteration on this. Instead of 4-3-3, I would opt for a more Graham Potter-esque 3-4-3. Still retaining width in attack with wingers and wing backs, just taking one defensive minded midfielder off to have either an extra ball-playing centre-back or a stalwart like Evans.

Next. Why Graham Potter rejected Leicester City manager job offer. dark

Preferred XI: Iversen, Kristiansen, Faes, Souttar, Caglar Soyuncu, Castagne, Boubakary Soumare, Madders, Barnes, Iheanacho, Pereira. Soyuncu has been let down by Rodgers so should get one last hurrah with the King Power club, whereas Soumare is more possession-based than KDH so should get the nod if we remove a midfielder in favour of a defender.