Newcastle United have been handed a late boost ahead of their Premier League meeting with Leicester City this afternoon.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference ahead of the Foxes’ Europa Conference League quarter-final victory on Thursday night, Brendan Rodgers revealed that Jamie Vardy, who has not featured for Leicester since their 1-0 win over Leeds United back in March, is no closer to making a return from his hamstring injury – with the 35-year-old once again being ruled out for the trip to St. James’ Park later on today.
Speaking about the current condition of the former England international on Thursday, Rodgers said: “He’s not available. It’s hard to put a timeline on it. He can still feel pain in the knee. I’ll have to speak with the medical team to see where that’s at. It doesn’t sound as if he’s too close to being back.”
Despite being well into the twilight years of his professional footballing career, Vardy is quite clearly still a goalscorer of the highest calibre – with his continued absence against Newcastle undoubtedly being something that will have left Eddie Howe buzzing.
Indeed, while his season has been severely hampered by various knocks, the £4.5m-rated hitman has still highly impressed over his 18 Premier League outings this term, scoring 10 goals, registering two assists and creating one big chance for his teammates, as well as taking an average of 2.1 shots and making 0.9 key passes per game.
Furthermore, with Vardy also having scored five goals and provided three assists over the 13 fixtures in which has faced Newcastle throughout his career, it is clear the 35-year-old often enjoys his clashes with Magpies.
As such, the fact that the Foxes are without Vardy will certainly come as a huge boost to the Magpies’ chances of securing victory this afternoon – with a win against ninth-placed Leicester seeing Newcastle move to within three points of their opposition, an almost unthinkable scenario at the turn of the year.