Leicester City steered their way through to the Emirates FA Cup finals after narrowly overcoming Southampton at the Wembley Stadium. Kelechi Iheanacho’s solitary 55th minute strike was enough to grant the club a FA Cup final spot for the first time in 52 years. The Foxes face Chelsea in the final showdown next month.
With the Premier League heading towards the climax and the fight for a top four spot still wide open, the Foxes welcome West Bromwich Albion on Matchday 32.
Brendan Rodgers spoke to the press ahead of hosting Sam Allardyce’s men at the King Power Stadium.
On his fresh squad
Rodgers has a relatively fresh squad at his disposal – with no new injuries within the team members. Harvey Barnes & Justin James remain as the only two long term absentees.
He said: “There’s nothing new to what we had at the weekend, it’ll be similar guys available. There’s nobody else coming in who will be fit.”
However, full back Ricardo Pereira faced a minor calf problem which saw him substituted in the FA Cup semi-final over the weekend
Speaking of Pereira, Rodgers said: "Ricky is coming back from a long-term injury. I'm obviously careful with him. He took a blow to his calf at the weekend, but hopefully he should be fine.”
On the clash in general
Sam Allardyce’s men are not to be taken lightly. Although the Baggies lie in the 19th position and in line to join relegated Sheffield United in the EFL Championship, they have recorded two straight victories – including a 5-2 thrashing of Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea.
"It’ll be a very dangerous game for us. They’ve shown against Chelsea and Southampton they’re a very dangerous team. Sam sets them up and they’ve been defensively strong.”
West Brom have scored eight and conceded just two in the last two matches.
Adding further, Rodgers said: “They haven't conceded too many goals and they’ve also got players who are dynamic and can cause you a problem."
On Tottenham-bound rumours
With Jose Mourinho having vacated his chair at Tottenham Hotspur, speculation of Rodgers taking over charge have been circulating in the British media.
Speaking of which, the Northern Irishman commented: “It’s normal, it’s football, there is always speculation around. Every job that comes up, there will always be different managers speculated to go in.
I have always said I absolutely love it here. Tottenham is a fantastic club, it’s one of the big clubs in this country, and it’s a huge club. My focus is purely here."
On the top-four talk
The gaffer also mentioned the fact that his side’s run to the final of the oldest cup competition in the world will hopefully instigate the players to achieve a top four finish ‘against the odds’.
“I think it will give us a huge boost. We have now won it and now we’ve got to put it to the side because we’ve got another great opportunity to arrive in the top four against the odds. We want to push and give it everything to do that.”
The Foxes have not finished in the top four of the Premier League since they last won the league in the 2015/16 season. The closest the club have come is last season – with a fifth placed finish, four points behind Chelsea.
“When we met at the beginning of the season, we wanted to [qualify for] European football and we want to try and finish that job off,” he said.