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16 May 2022

Brendan Rogers says 'big changes' are needed to 'reinvigorate' Leicester squad in summer

Brendan Rogers says 'big changes' are needed to 'reinvigorate' Leicester squad in summer

Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers is planning to “refresh the squad” at the end of this season with preparations for the summer transfer window already under way.

Rodgers, who will celebrate three years in charge at the King Power Stadium this month, has suggested big changes are needed to reinvigorate the team.

The Foxes have struggled this season with numerous injuries to key players and are languishing in mid-table in the Premier League, having seriously competed for the Champions League places during the previous two campaigns.

Rodgers wanted to sign a central defender during the winter transfer window but there were no new arrivals, and the 49-year-old has hinted the club will show its ambition in the summer market.

“For us, our focus is very much on the summer window. We know we need to make big changes to freshen up the squad and the planning is well under way for that,” said Rodgers.

“It’s tough in January, anyway. It was not through a lack of trying or ambition by the club.

“It’s a club that’s run financially very well, but it’s a window that was always going to be difficult for us.

“Also, with players coming back (after injuries), we knew they were coming back into the squad, so we were planning towards the summer.

“There’s no doubt we need to make changes come the summer. We’ll have been working together for over three years come then, so we will need to refresh the squad, and that’s something we will do.

“But for this window, it wasn’t possible for us to do that. I’m really happy with the players we do have, and we’ll look to work with them and improve them.”

Rodgers feels there is an element of Leicester becoming victims of their own success when it comes to the transfer market.

The club have twice finished fifth under Rodgers and lifted the FA Cup for the first time in their history last season.

“We have ambitions here and it was the reason I came to Leicester City,” he said.

“I didn’t come to just go through the motions, I came here to work with a squad of players who can hopefully challenge towards the top of the league. That was the big reason I came.

“But it’s all about the timing. If the opportunity isn’t there and availability and affordability of a player isn’t there, we are not a club that can spend endless pots of money.

“Where the confusion comes is that because of where we’ve been challenging in these last few seasons, it’s been deemed that maybe we are one of those clubs. Our ambition is to be there but it’s always going to be a challenge for us.

“We need to have our best players available, and if they’re not, it’s difficult for us, and that’s been this season.”

Leicester continue their defence of the FA Cup on Sunday away to Nottingham Forest in the fourth round and will be boosted by the return of Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho after their Africa Cup of Nations campaigns ended.

Nampalys Mendy is still out in Cameroon, though, with his Senegal side set to contest the final this weekend.

Wesley Fofana, Jamie Vardy, Jonny Evans, Timothy Castagne and Ricardo Pereira remain out injured.

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