June 21, 2021

Daniel Amartey: Leicester City boss Rodgers explains exclusion from Europa League squad

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The Foxes manager has shed light on the Ghana international’s omission from their European roster 

Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers has revealed injured Ghana defender Daniel Amartey is expected to be out of action until December, prompting his exclusion from the club’s squad for the Uefa Europa League group stage.

The 25-year-old, together with winger Demaray Gray and Algeria striker Islam Slimani, was among the conspicuous absentees from the Foxes’ 24-man squad submitted for the first stage of the continental championship.

Leicester begin their campaign against Ukrainian outfit Zorya Luhansk on Thursday.

Back in action after a two-year ankle injury layoff, Amartey suffered a setback in just his third competitive game back as he sustained a hamstring injury during a Premier League clash with West Ham United on October 4.

“Daniel was purely [excluded] because of injury. He’s going to be out for a long period,” Leicester coach Brendan Rodgers said, Leicester Mercury has reported.

“He’s sustained a really bad hamstring injury which is such a shame because he’s worked so hard after a couple of years out, to get game-time and play so well against Manchester City, and then to play against West Ham and to pick up the injury.

“We were so disappointed for him.

“So he wasn’t going to feature for us [in the Europa League group stage].”

Amartey could join Leicester’s Europa League roster in January should he regain fitness and the club progress to the knock-out stage of the competition.

Following his 2018 ankle injury, the Accra-born briefly returned to fitness last season but struggled for form and match opportunities, prompting reports of an imminent move away from the club.

Indeed, during the January transfer window, he was linked to Newcastle United and Sheffield United but no deal materialised.

“Obviously, Daniel Amartey is out with his hamstring for a number of weeks, so the international break hasn’t been too kind for us,” Rodgers said in his team news on Friday ahead of Sunday’s league tie against Aston Villa, his club’s official website reports.

Amartey joined Leicester in 2016 after catching the eye with a string of fine performances for Danish side FC Copenhagen.

In his first season in England, he featured in five Premier League games as the club sensationally claimed the title.