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2020-2021-Season

#PLStories- #BrendanRodgers wants new striker to ease burden on ‘irreplaceable’ #JamieVardy #LCFC

Brendan Rodgers

Leicester City are gearing up to find an alternative to Jamie Vardy to lessen the demand on the club’s talisman. City manager Brendan Rodgers has expressed his desire to strengthen in the striking department in the summer to lighten the load on the 34-year-old number nine, who has been pushed to the limit in recent weeks. However, the City boss was at pains to point out he was not looking to replace Vardy, which is an “impossible” task.

Brendan Rodgers said: “That time comes to all players, not just Jamie. He’s been an incredible servant for the club and still has a big contribution to make for us over this season and the next couple of seasons. There’s no doubt that with the games we’re playing and the demands put on players, of course he’s not going to be able to play to the rhythm and style every single game. It’s something we all understand within the club and for everyone in every position you have to plan forward. Our idea in the summer is to strengthen the squad again. For Jamie it’s been unfortunate that we haven’t been able to take him out so much, after the injury that he’s had. He’s virtually had to come in and play a lot of the games where ideally because of the situation that we’re in we wouldn’t want to. He always makes himself available and he’s still such a threat. He’s always there because it only takes just one moment of quality and brilliance to get a goal. I still think there’s a lot more left in the tank yet. He’s irreplaceable. You cannot find anyone there. He’s such a unique story with his qualities and what he’s given to Leicester in the Premier League. You see it on lots of occasions, can you find the replica of that type of player? For us, it’s more about the actual profile of player we want. I will always look to have speed at the top of the field, but there are other attributes we would look for. To try and replace him is impossible. He’s such a unique player with a unique story and I’m glad it’s that way too.”

For now, the focus is to get Vardy firing to help City’s push for the Champions League, because without the injured Harvey Barnes and James Maddison, the striker has lost his supply line. He has had just one shot in his last two Premier League games.

Brendan Rodgers said: “Can we look at his movements in order to offer more opportunities and more runs to get in?  He’s not a link player, he’s not going to come underneath and turn and be creative in that way. He relies on a through pass. You see James Maddison, when he plays, it’s automatic. When he receives it, Jamie’s on his bike. He craves that type of player and especially without Dennis (Praet), that’s what we don’t have. It’s understandable that in the last few games that it’s been limited, the opportunities he’s had. We also want to encourage him to find new ways to find the space. He is a player that while he is on the pitch, defenders always have to be alert, even if his contribution is limited. Everyone will tell you about the touches he has or doesn’t have but he’s a player that even though he’s out of the game, he’s always in the game. It’s just about keeping his confidence up. He’s a great man who has been brilliant for me in my time here, and the goals will come for him. Every striker will go through spells. As long as they’re contributing with their work and intensity, that’s what we want.”

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