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Brendan Rodgers confident Leicester can arrest slump and seal top four spot

Everton v Leicester City – Premier League – Goodison Park
(Image credit: Peter Powell/NMC Pool)

Brendan Rodgers insisted Leicester were still well placed to make their Champions League dreams reality despite their slump continuing with defeat at Everton.

The Foxes have now collected just two points from their three Premier League games since the competition resumed after losing 2-1 at Everton.

Rodgers’ side were third going into the game but their grip on a Champions League place is loosening with the chasing pack closing in.

The Leicester manager said: “How we have performed for the best part of this season has got us into a strong position.

“Our form hasn’t been the best for a period now but we still have it in our hands to achieve what would be a dream for us, getting into the top four. But we can only get that if the performance is right.”

Leicester were stung early on by a 10th-minute strike from Richarlison and fell further behind six minutes later to a Gylfi Sigurdsson penalty.

Leicester have hit a poor run of form

Leicester have hit a poor run of form (Peter Powell/NMC Pool/PA)

The visitors rallied after the break and replied through Kelechi Iheanacho but could not convert their late pressure into an equaliser.

Rodgers said: “We were much much better in the second half and that makes it equally frustrating because we set out to start with that tempo.

“That is something that has crept back into our game – we haven’t started quickly enough.

“After controlling possession we found ourselves a goal behind but it was early, we could get ourselves back into the game. But I thought the penalty was harsh and in this environment it can be difficult to come back from 2-0 down.”

Rodgers was unhappy with the penalty, awarded for handball against Wilfred Ndidi after a lengthy VAR check.

He said: “I think it was so harsh but we have had a few of those we haven’t got. It was certainly not clear and obvious.”

Everton are looking upwards after a second successive win. With six games remaining, the Europa League places are firmly in reach.

Carlo Ancelotti (left) has his sights set on a Europa League spot

Carlo Ancelotti (left) has his sights set on a Europa League spot (Clive Brunskill/NMC Pool/PA)

Manager Carlo Ancelotti said: “That is what we wanted from this game – three points.

“I think the first half was good for us but then they changed their shape and we had more difficulty with (James) Maddison. The second half was difficult.

“We were a little worried and didn’t play as well as we did in the first half but in the end the the points give us the possibility to continue the dream.

“The next game will be important but we have to be there to fight for a place in Europe.”

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