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Leicester City boss defends Patson Daka

Leicester City boss defends Patson Daka

Patson Daka scored seven goals in his first 10 appearances of the season for Leicester City, but has not scored in any of his last nine , in which he’s missed some big chances.

Showing faith in goal-shy strikers is the best way to get them firing again, Enzo Maresca has said amid Patson Daka’s two-month drought.

Daka scored seven goals in his first 10 appearances of the season, the Zambian coming good when City needed him back in December, with Jamie Vardy and Kelechi Iheanacho both injured. But he’s now gone eight games without finding the net and missed some big chances in the meantime, most notably the one-on-one against Leeds that he mis-hit wide, and Tuesday’s last-second header at Millwall that he misjudged.

He could come back into the line-up at Plymouth if Maresca continues his rotation routine up front. Showing that he has the 25-year-old’s back is the best way to get him on the scoresheet again, the manager believes.

“Strikers, they need goals,” Maresca said. “They need that. The other day he (Daka) missed one. But it can happen. Hopefully him, Jamie, Kele, Tom, if they have the chance, they can score and they can help us in the final five games of the season.

“It’s just about showing them confidence and trust. And the only way to show them confidence and trust most of the time is to give them minutes. If the manager gives you minutes, it’s because they trust you.”

At the end of Tuesday’s game, in City’s desperate search for an equaliser, Maresca brought Daka on to play alongside Kelechi Iheanacho. It was rare to see the City boss go for two strikers, and he says it’s only in situations like that they he will consider it an option.

“It was just for that scenario,” he said. “I’m not a fan to play with two strikers. It’s because in that moment, there was five minutes to go. We tried to put another striker on to see if we could take one point. But I’m not a fan of playing two strikers. We’ll see if it’s going to happen again, but it’s not the ideal situation for us.”

[Leicester Mercury]

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