Brendan Rodgers finally bowed to common sense when he decided to hand Kelechi Iheanacho his first Premier League start of the season.
Kelechi Iheanacho goal spares Leicester City’s blushes
The Leicester striker scored on his return to the starting line-up and helped his team to a hard-fought draw at Selhurst Park.
The Nigerian striker grabbed the opportunity with both hands with his display on a day not too many things went right for his team. He scored the opening goal after winning the ball from a lax Joachim Andersen and poked home the resulting opportunity.
Even though they went on to draw the game and dropped two vital points, his performance was a great statement to his manager.
Iheanacho’s performance wasn’t just about the goal he scored; his overall play was especially impressive. He linked up well with his teammates and picked Harvey Barnes out with a nice pass that the winger really should have converted when they were still two goals up.
His overall stats showed he completed 70% of his passes on the day which is impressive for a player playing up top.
There has been a lot of pressure on Brendan Rodgers to get the 25-year-old on the team due to his stellar goal scoring form recently, one that the manager has been reluctant to oblige because he would have needed to alter his formation to accommodate him and the ever-present Jamie Vardy.
Rodgers attested to that after the match when questioned by reporters.
"He can’t play in another position. He’s purely a striker,” the Foxes boss explained.
“When you play with two strikers, there’s a change behind that. That’s some of the things I need to look at. It doesn’t allow us to keep the ball as well as we would look at.”
The stats however suggest that the combination of both strikers starting has been such a potent weapon for Leicester as both strikers have scored 33 goals (Jamie Vardy, 17 & Kelechi Iheanacho, 16) in the 32 matches that they have started for the Foxes together.
This match against Crystal Palace proved just that with both strikers getting on the scoresheet.
With Leicester needing as many goals as they can find at the moment, the former Liverpool manager will need to find a way to accommodate both strikers if he intends to get their season back on track.
Seye Omidiora is a passionate football writer and pundit whose deep appreciation for the beautiful game exceeds the usual. He is currently a columnist for Goal Africa and has previously written for Vital Football UK, IBCity Info and Opera News.
Follow him on Twitter @theReal_SeyE
Pulse Contributors is an initiative to highlight diverse journalistic voices. Pulse Contributors do not represent the company Pulse and contribute on their own behalf.
JOIN OUR PULSE COMMUNITY!
Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or: