Brendan Rodgers has reminded Kelechi Iheanacho of the “golden rule” of being a striker after his three dinked finishes missed the target.
The Leicester City manager has watched from the touchline as his frontman, playing in place of the injured Jamie Vardy, has tried a cute chip when through one-on-one in the last three outings, but failed to find the net each time.
In the win over Brentford, Iheanacho created the chance himself, surging between two centre-backs before dinking wide.
At Manchester United, he latched onto Jadon Sancho’s misplaced back-pass but scooped the ball over the bar from a tight angle. And then, in Thursday’s draw with PSV, he missed the biggest chance of the match when Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s interception sent him clear, his lob bouncing past the post.
Rather than rue his striker’s misses, he praised Iheanacho for having the confidence to take on the dink, but reminded him of the importance of working the goalkeeper.
The manager said: “You need to have variety in your finishes, of course. I saw him with the chiropodist, getting his feet done, and I asked her to shave a bit off his toe, just so he could bring it down a little bit.
“He’s shown that he can score goals. I love that confidence. I love that ability to be able to do that. But of course, you want them to hit the target. That’s the golden rule as a striker, to hit the target.
“He’s been in a couple of those positions, and it just went wide on the Brentford one, the one at Man United nearly went out of the stadium, and the one last night (against PSV) just went wide. He knows that himself. It’s great that they have the variation now. You have to have that variation as a striker.”
With Vardy out injured with a knee problem, Iheanacho looks to have taken over as Rodgers’ first-choice striker for now, and retains the faith of the boss. The Nigerian has seven goals to his name so far in all competitions, having scored 19 last term.
Rodgers added: “If you take Jamie out, you lose that natural goal scorer who has that penetration, and that experience. Kels has shown he can score goals and was our top goal scorer last season. But it’s getting goals from other areas of the team.”