Rodgers target Brentford scalp



Leicester City, Brentford, Premier League campaign with a fixture at the King Power Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

While the Foxes are looking to improve on a disappointing season last time around, the Bees will be keen to build on comfortably avoiding relegation during their first year in the division.

Ahead of what feels like a make-or-break Premier League campaign, Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers would prefer not to be constantly addressing speculation regarding the futures of several of his key men.

However, that is where the Foxes are at right now having failed to make a single first-team addition amid concerns over a lack of transfer funds.

Kasper Schmeichel is already a big miss to this squad after being allowed to join Nice, and Rodgers will feel that it is crucial that Wesley Fofana, Youri Tielemans and James Maddison do not follow the legendary Dane out of the exit door.

Realistically, only one of that trio may be sold with Leicester having ambitions to challenge for a return to European football, but the East Midlands outfit are no more than outsiders to achieve that target.

Nevertheless, Rodgers will be more than satisfied with the team’s pre-season, the last of fourth successive wins coming against Sevilla last weekend.

Brentford also concluded their schedule with success against a Spanish side as they posted a 1-0 triumph over Real Betis.

Thomas Frank may not read too much into pre-season, but he will be delighted with how the Bees have fared in the transfer market since the end of last season.

Brentford saw off competition to make the high-profile signings of Thomas Strakosha, Ben Mee, Aaron Hickey and Keane Lewis-Potter.

Although it is natural to expect a bedding-in period to follow, expectations are high that the London outfit can improve on their excellent 13th-placed finish during 2021-22.

Leicester will be without Ricardo Pereira, who sustained an Achilles injury against Sevilla last weekend.

That may result in Rodgers switching to a back three with Daniel Amartey returning to the team and James Justin and Timothy Castagne being used as wing-backs.

Harvey Barnes misses out with a knee injury, while Daniel Iversen is expected to get the nod between the sticks.

Frank went with a back four against Real Betis, the subsequent clean sheet and strong showing potentially leading to the same Brentford team and system being selected on Sunday.

That would see Hickey and Mee start in defence, with Lewis-Potter left to occupy a spot among the replacements.