Jack Grealish’s injury prevented him from showing what he is capable of on Sunday, but both James Maddison and Harvey Barnes seized their chance to shine.
The Leicester duo were absolutely on target and, as in the 2-1 win over Aston Villa, did a lot of damage – especially Barnes on the left, but also moving inside.
Maddison came out strong in the second half, but his passing was so easy to watch that he took the ball under pressure and the little balls he played too went sideways.
Maddison and Barnes will only get better – Rogers
They were both so positive and always looking forward to an obsession.
The England international picked the right time to deliver that performance at Villa Park, and with the European Championships just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to get into shape.
Maddison is coming, but will Barnes go with him?
Maddison celebrates his goal against Villa – his seventh in Leicester’s last 14 Premier League games.
There are many candidates to be part of Southgate’s squad for this summer’s Euro 2020 revival, but I think Maddison will be one of them.
When you’re fighting for your place on the court for the grand finale, it helps if you have a lot going for you, which Maddison has.
Not only is he a provider, but he scores a lot outside the zone, like on Sunday, and his free throws are also notable.
Barnes has a better chance on the flanks, but he can’t do much more for his prospects than he is currently doing for Leicester.
Not only is he a regular for a team at the top of the Premier League, but he is also one of the main reasons for the good results: he influences the games with his performances and scores more and more goals.
Foxes’ coach Brendan Rodgers gave Barnes the role on the wing, starting on the left but also running inside, and he did well.
His goal against Villa was his 13th of the season. He’s already scored more goals in every league this season – that’s already more than he’s scored in a single season – but he’s scoring so many good goals that there should be more.
As with the rest of the game, his finishing will only get better as he gains confidence – and there’s more, I’m sure.
New Vardy? There are raw materials
Barnes scored his third goal against Leicester at Liverpool last week. After a goal and another assist against Villa, he now has 13 goals and four assists in all competitions in the 2020-21 season.
As Barnes developed, it was suggested that he could eventually replace Jamie Vardy and play as a centre-back.
We haven’t seen him in central defence at Leicester in a while, we don’t know if he can do it yet, but the raw material is certainly there.
In addition to his speed, Barnes acquired the intelligence to synchronize his runs, and he had the intelligence to adapt to the role of number nine when asked to fill it regularly.
Will it be better centered than wide and clamped? We won’t know until we see it in action. Sure, he’s not a Vardy finisher yet, but who is?
What’s encouraging for Rodgers is that his Leicester team aren’t just counting on Vardy to score more goals – of his last four wins in all competitions, the old man has only scored in one.
Like Maddison and Barnes, Yuri Thielemans also shoots in midfield, and they all take responsibility not only for scoring goals, but also for creating them. That is one of the reasons they are in the top four and it looks like they will stay there.
Grealish would be on my team in England if he was.
Aston VillaGrealish has scored six Premier League goals and provided 10 assists this season – only Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane has given more.
Leicester have already shown they can cope without Vardy, but it’s clear the Greek was missing from Villa’s side on Sunday.
The bad news for Villa is that Grealish could be out for a month due to a leg injury and it would be a shame if that also affected his chances in England after the brilliant season he has had.
Like Maddison, he’s a great footballer, but he’s different in the way he carries the ball forward and brings Villa up the pitch.
Grealish often does it on his own, and Villa had problems against Leicester, who didn’t.
It’s been a while since they had to do without him in the Premier League – he last missed a league game until Sunday in November 2019 – but his teammates need to do better.
There’s no point in Willa bringing him back, and that doesn’t help him either. Grealish would be in my England team every day of the week if he was in top form, and that is what he needs to focus on now to be at his best at club and national team level.
Dion Dublin spoke to athlete Chris Bevan.
frequently asked questions
What is James Maddison worth?
James Maddison Wiki 2021 – Girls, Salary, Tattoo, Cars …
Where does James Madison live?
In the early 1760s, enslaved plantation workers built a Georgian brick building a half mile away. The Madisons, who later called the estate Montpelier, took up residence in this house. James Madison, a naturally curious and erudite child, probably began his education at home under the care of his mother.
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