Super Eagles News: Ndidi and Iheanacho on the Brink of Losing Premier League Status

Super Eagles News: Ndidi and Iheanacho on the Brink of Losing Premier League Status
Ndidi and Iheanacho could play in the Championship next season

Super Eagles international players Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi are on the brink of spending next season in the Championship. The club they currently play for, Leicester City, currently sits at 19th in the Premier League and are two points from safety with two games to go.

Both players are seen as very important parts of the Nigeria national football team squad and would be expected to play key roles in the upcoming AFCON 2023 tournament, but there is a chance that they will have a Premier League relegation in their resume by then.

Liverpool loss another nail in their coffin

The Foxes' difficult run to end the season continued as they welcomed Liverpool to the Kingpower stadium. Their opponents on Monday evening were in red hot form and had won six games in a row before facing Leicester.

Ndidi was named in the starting line up while Iheanacho did not make the substitutes bench. After a flurry of offense by the Foxes in the opening minutes of the match, Liverpool successfully weathered the storm and got the opening goal against the run of play. Curtis Jones opened the scoring and it was downhill from there for Leicester City.

The Liverpool midfielder who is of Nigerian descent scored his second of the night not long after. By then, Liverpool were in full control of the game and Wilfred Ndidi in midfield was unable to do anything to halt the slide. 

Liverpool got their third in the second period through Trent Alexander-Arnold in what was an easy outing for Jurgen Klopp’s men. 

Time is running out for Leicester and Ndidi

For Leicester City, their road to safety does not get any easier and their window of opportunity is closing. They travel to Newcastle to take on the Magpies at Saint James’ Park for their next fixture and will be underdogs in that game. They will do well to get anything out of that fixture as their opponents next Monday are one of the strongest sides in the Premier League at home.

Since they play on a Monday, they may be faced with a situation where results in other fixtures will mean that they definitely have to win to keep their chances of survival alive. A loss in that match will seal their fate. 

Wilfred Ndidi at his best is seen as a tough tackling midfielder with bags of energy. Ndidi is capable of handling the defensive work of the entire midfield on his own while having the awareness to bring his more creative teammates into play. His Leicester City teammate, James Maddison, once called him the best defensive midfielder in the Premier League

Ndidi has also been a rock in midfield for his country and his performances in the 2019 and 2021 AFCON tournaments speak for themselves.

 This season, he has been a complete shadow of himself for both club and country. It looks like the strain of a condensed season has gotten to him and his ability to sufficiently cover ground has left him. As a key player for the national team, his form this close to a big tournament is worrying.

On the surface, Kelechi Iheanacho has put up decent numbers this season. His 5 goals and four assists in the League has him ranked third in goal contributions for the club but his form has been too inconsistent for him to be reliable. He has been in and out of the starting lineup this season and his inconsistent form has seeped into his performances for the Super Eagles.

 

This article was most recently revised and updated 11 months ago

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