Former footballer Stewart Robson has praised the influence that Brendan Rodgers has had on James Maddison’s performances, after highlighting his showing as he scored in the Foxes’ comfortable 3-0 win over Newcastle United.
Will James Maddison be a Leicester player next season?
Speaking on ESPN FC, Robson hailed the midfielder’s improvement under Brendan Rodgers and credited the Foxes boss with improving other sides of the 23-year-old’s game.
While he is more of an attack-minded midfielder (with his goalscoring record providing convincing evidence of that), Robson was pleased to see that the midfielder could muck in with the defensive side of the game, too.
He said: “I was always wary – was he going to be a player that could do both sides of the game, press the ball and be creative?
“He’s proving that he can do both those things. His technique is excellent, he’s got the vision to pick out a pass, he makes good decisions with the ball, he’s now working hard to close it down and win it back.
“That’s something that Brendan Rodgers has really worked hard [on] with him over the last year or so.”
There can be little arguing that Maddison has been one of Leicester’s brightest sparks this year. He is second only to Premier League top-scorer Jamie Vardy among his teammates in terms of league goals, while only Ricardo Pereira currently has a higher average match rating from WhoScored.
However, his supposed improved defensive contributions that Robson alludes to may require more convincing. While he ranks third in Leicester’s squad for tackles made per game, Maddison places much lower in terms of interceptions made and is dribbled past more often than all but two of his teammates.
Though why Maddison should be expected to excel in defensive areas is perhaps something Robson should elaborate on. It is surely hardly a stain on Maddison’s record that he ranks lower for more defensive attributes – especially when his attacking statistics are so strong.
But whether or not he has improved defensively, both he and Rodgers deserve credit for his overall performances that have seen him impress for the high-flying Foxes this season.
Leicester fans, could Maddison claim to be the team’s best player? Let us know what you think below!
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