London: Leicester City will be disappointed if they fail to qualify for the Champions League but that will only provide motivation for the next season, according to manager Brendan Rodgers.
Leicester are currently fifth, one-point below a resurgent Manchester United who they face in a showdown for a spot in the top four at home on their final matchday on Sunday.
Leicester will need to win the match to seal qualification for the Champions League, which would be only their second time in Europe’s elite competition after their run to the quarter-final in the 2016/17 season. Leicester had qualified then as the surprise Premier League champions.
“The six targets we had – two of those was to get to domestic finals, one was semi-final, one was quarter-final, so we just fell short in those but met all of the other performance goals, in terms of reaching European football and improving our goalscoring,” he said in the pre-match press conference.
“Now we’ve a chance to…this is virtually like a barrier-breaking goal, a goal that will get us into the Champions League.
“It wasn’t really something we spoke about at the beginning of the season because naturally, where the club had been these last few seasons, we wanted to try step-by-step to arrive there.”
Leicester had a 14-point lead over United in January and were eight points ahead of fifth place before the season restarted after the pandemic-enforced break.
“The league is over 38 games and people were having us in the Champions League after 20 games. You have to go right the way to the end,” said Rodgers.
“There’ll be disappointment if we don’t make it but that would whet the appetite for next season. We were in a good position but you’ve got to sustain it. It also shows you the big improvements this team still has to make.
“We dropped points and we need to be better in that and next year our mentality is one of the areas that needs to improve to sustain the run.”
Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from IANS service.