Brendan Rodgers wants more from his Leicester City team as they head to Leeds United, warning the Foxes they are not good enough to win playing at “75 per cent.”
Leicester have made an underwhelming start to the season and sit in the bottom half going into their 11th match.
The two fixtures directly before the trip to Elland Road saw Leicester beaten 2-0 by Arsenal in the league and draw 1-1 with Spartak Moscow in the Europa League, both at home.
Rodgers felt some of his players did not show the right attitude in those games and knows they cannot afford to be found wanting against an energetic Leeds outfit.
“It is not all the team,” he said. “We have players who are performing to a really good level, they’re showing that desire and mentality to do the dirty work.
“I say the same thing to them – I don’t beat around the bush when I’m talking about a bush – we need to run more. And as a collective, it’s no good seven or eight players doing it. That’s what’s always got us those wins and that consistency.
“We’re not good enough as a group to win games at 75 per cent. We’re a team that has to be at maximum.
“That’s something we’ll analyse and speak about because it’s something that cost us against Arsenal and cost us on Thursday.”
Leeds have also had the advantage of a clear week while Leicester were in European action, but Marcelo Bielsa does not feel that is a major benefit.
“The teams that play in two competitions, they normally prepare themselves for this,” Bielsa said.
“I am referring to the amount of players they have and I am also referring to the way that they prepare, the loads that they have and the rest.”
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Leeds United – Rodrigo
Raphinha has been Leeds’ main man this season, but he needs help if they are to move clear of the bottom three. Rodrigo has scored in consecutive league matches, and Bielsa will hope this is the start of an extended run of strong form.
Leicester City – Jamie Vardy
Vardy missed a penalty against Spartak, but he enjoys playing in Yorkshire, his home county. He has scored in five consecutive Premier League matches there, with Harry Kane the only player to net in six straight away games in Yorkshire.
KEY OPTA FACTS
– Leeds are looking to win consecutive league games against Leicester for the first time since December 1999, following their 3-1 win at the King Power Stadium in January.
– Leicester have won four of their last five away league games against Leeds (L1), as many as they had in their previous 16 visits to Elland Road. The Foxes are looking to win three in a row at Leeds for the first time in their history.
– Since Leeds returned to the Premier League, Leicester are the only side to score four goals against them in a league match at Elland Road. In their entire history, Leeds have only conceded four goals in consecutive home games against two opponents: Manchester City in 1957-58 (2-4) and 1958-59 (0-4) and Arsenal in 2002-03 (1-4) and 2003-04 (1-4).
– Leicester have scored in each of their last 12 away Premier League matches (W5 D3 L4), with only Liverpool on a longer current run (15). The Foxes last scored in 13 consecutive away top-flight matches between April and December 1960.
– Leeds are looking to win consecutive league games for the first time this season, though both of their victories so far this term have come against newly promoted sides Watford and Norwich City.