Leicester and Arsenal share attacking ‘identity and philosophy’, believes Brendan Rodgers
Brendan Rodgers hopes his Leicester City side can take on Premier League leaders Arsenal at their own game this weekend.
The Foxes boss concedes he is wary of the Gunners’ quality but hopes his players can give as good as they get at the King Power Stadium on Saturday.
Mikel Arteta’s side will be hoping to tighten their grip on top spot after moving two points clear of champions Manchester City, with a game in hand, last week.
“I think both teams want to play,” Rodgers told reporters at a press conference. “That’s the identity and philosophy of both Mikel and myself.
“We want to create and score goals. I think we’ve shown that but, of course, you have to be mindful of the quality they have.
“Like in all the big games against top teams, you have to defend well, you have to be strong, do all the basics of the game well, track runners, be competitive, and then you have to believe in your football, believe that you can create and score goals. It should be a fantastic game.”
Arsenal were knocked off the summit when they lost to City earlier this month but events last weekend – when they won a six-goal thriller at Aston Villa and the champions were held at Nottingham Forest – changed the picture again.
The Londoners now have a clear advantage but Rodgers cannot predict the outcome of the title race.
He said: “They have had a fantastic season up until now. I think you sensed right at the very beginning of the season that they had signed the two players who were gamechangers in terms of mentality – (Oleksandr) Zinchenko and (Gabriel) Jesus coming in would have helped give them that mindset.
“I think Mikel has done a fantastic job with them but there is still a long way to go, still 15 games. They are certainly going to be up there, competing and challenging, but we’ll see with five games to go.”
Leicester are hoping to get back to winning ways after their own recent revival, with four games unbeaten, was ended by last week’s loss at Manchester United.
Rodgers said: “In the first half we did very well but we got punished for a mistake. In the second half we gave away two quick goals and then the game got away from us.
“From that we deserved to lose but I think the first half gives us great encouragement. We’ve analysed the second-half performance and the areas we can be better in and we’ll look to bring that into the next game.”
James Maddison will assessed having been troubled by a knee problem since the game at Old Trafford.