Leicester City manager, Brendan Rodgers, has opened up on why Super Eagles forward Kelechi Iheanacho has continued to spend more time on the bench for the foxes.
Rodgers cited Iheanacho’s inability to properly fit into his new playing style as the reason why the 25-year-old has had to spend more time on the bench this season.
During the 2020/21 season, Iheanacho benefitted from the manager’s 4-4-2 formation which saw him earn more playing time where he also made 24 starts from his 39 appearances.
Despite emerging as the Foxes’ highest goalscorer last season with 19 goals and nine assists in 39 appearances, the Nigeria international this season has been reduced to the bench role and have made just eight starts in all competitions this season.
The striker has only played 54 minutes across City’s last six games despite finishing top scorer last season and making an impact whenever he played at the start of this year
The return of England’s Harvey Barnes from injury and the arrival of Patson Daka from Salzburg means the Nigerian has dropped in the pecking order with the club’s hero Jamie Vardy still the number one choice striker.
In a quote carried by Leicestermercury, the switch to a 4-2-3-1 system has been the big factor in Iheanacho’s limited pitch-time, with Rodgers suggesting he is best as part of a strike pairing. “I think we’ve said it before: he’s best in a two, that’s clear, that’s when he’s been really good,” Rodgers said.
“He’s training well, he’s a great professional, Kels, and he knows he’s going to feature over the course of this period at some point. It’s not the goalscoring that’s been an issue for us. We’ve created chances, we’ve scored goals, and scored enough goals to win games.
“My immediate concern is more getting that collective back, and getting that solidity into the team again and knowing that all of these guys will get a chance to play at some point.”