‘It’s not our concern to catch Liverpool’ – Rodgers claims Leicester focused on developing youngsters, not title race


The Foxes boss saw his young side put in another impressive performance to brush Newcastle aside with a 3-0 away win on New Year’s Day

Leicester are more concerned about developing their young squad than catching Premier League leaders Liverpool this season, according to Brendan Rodgers.

The Foxes kept up the pace at the top of the table with a comprehensive 3-0 win at Newcastle on New Year’s Day, closing the gap to 10 points ahead of Liverpool’s game with Sheffield United on Thursday.

Ayoze Perez, James Maddison and Hamza Choudhury scored against a Newcastle side riddled by injuries at St James’ Park.

With Manchester City struggling for consistency, Leicester have been tipped by many to push Liverpool closest this season – but Rodgers isn’t interested.

“It’s not our concern to catch Liverpool, we get asked all the time but we are about developing the squad and the team,” the Foxes manager said.

“They are young players still learning, James has shown he is a top talent consistently, a magical player, and Hamza can get better at that part of his game.

“We played very well. We wanted to attack with and without the ball and we were very good in both aspects. Our pressing got us the first two goals.

“They obviously lost a man [to injury] early in the second half and I was pleased with how we controlled the game.

“It’s difficult to play with a man less but we had chances to score more and then eventually Hamza gets his first goal for the club. A really good performance.”

Rodgers is also hoping for a quiet January transfer window, with a number of his players rumoured to be targets for rival clubs.

Maddison and defender Caglar Soyuncu are among those linked with a move away, though Rodgers has been clear that he will not sanction departures for any of his first-teamers.

“The club will look at any players who can make us better but January is a difficult window,” he added.

“You can see the talented squad we have here.”

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Leicester’s victory on Tyneside was all the more impressive for the fact they were without leading scorer Jamie Vardy.

The 32-year-old had missed the 2-1 win over West Ham due to the birth of his daughter, and missed out on the Newcastle game with a minor calf injury.

Leicester have back-to-back home cup fixtures up next, with an FA Cup clash with Wigan followed by the Carabao Cup semi-final first leg against Aston Villa.


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