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Rodgers accepts ‘lack of experience’ told in PSV stalemate

Europa League

Rodgers accepts ‘lack of experience’ told in PSV stalemate


Brendan Rodgers says Leicester City’s lack of experience showed in their 0-0 draw with PSV but remains hopeful of advancing into the Europa Conference League semi-finals.

The Foxes could not find a way through from their ten shots in Thursday’s quarter-final first leg at the King Power Stadium, just two of which were on target.

That equated to an expected goals (xG) return of 0.72 for City, compared to 0.47 for PSV, who tested Kasper Schmeichel on only one occasion in the stalemate.

It is the first time Leicester have failed to score in a European game in nine outings, having netted 20 times across the previous eight at an average of 2.5 goals per game.

Leicester was competing in just their second European quarter-final, the other coming in the 2016-17 Champions League, whereas PSV has reached the last eight 16 times.

And City boss Rodgers, whose side has lacked consistency throughout the season, felt that told in a game between two well-matched teams.

Rodgers said at his post-match news conference:

“At times, we showed our lack of experience, but that will come.

“In the first half, we broke through but tried to force it.

“It was always going to be tight. You want to win it, but it wasn’t to be.

“So we’ll go there, and they’ll open up more, giving us more space. We’re looking forward to it.”

Harvey Barnes went closest to netting for City when rattling the crossbar just before half-time, while Mario Gotze was denied by a good Schmeichel stop from PSV’s best chance.

Kelechi Iheanacho led the line without injured strike partner Jamie Vardy and attempted twice as many shots (four) as any player, despite playing only 67 minutes.

After a frustrating day in front of goal, Rodgers admitted he was after more cutting-edge from his attacking players.

“It’s a good performance. There were not too many chances,” he said. “PSV had an early one, but I thought we defended strongly.

“There were not too many chances in the game. However, maybe a bit more quality in the final third would have made it easier.

“We just lacked that bit of quality up there. We didn’t have that extra final bit of quality to create that chance.

“There was no surprise in terms of PSV. They have good players and are a threat to the counter-attack.

“Domestically, PSV scores many goals home and away, but we restricted them to not so much.”

Leicester has lost just one of their last 16 matches in European competition, keeping eight clean sheets.

The return leg takes place at Philips Stadion next Thursday, with the winners to take on either Bodo/Glimt or Roma in the semi-finals.

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