Despite enjoying a better campaign this term compared to his previous two seasons at the club, Nigeria great Nduka Ugbade is confident that there is more to come from the former Man City star.
Leicester City must afford Kelechi Iheanacho more playing time if the Foxes desire to see the youngster maximize his undoubted potential, says coach Ugbade.
The East Midland club convinced the 23-year-old to quit Manchester City and join the Foxes in 2017, but the Nigerian forward endured a lacklustre campaign, netting just three times all season.
The following season was worse with Iheanacho finding the back of the net only once in 30 league games.
Iheanacho has, however, shown significant improvement this term at the King Power Stadium, with the striker boasting eight goals across all competitions for Brendan Rodgers’ men – three of them coming in the Premier League.
Ugbade knows the forward well having worked as assistant coach of the Golden Eaglets when Iheanacho powered Nigeria to glory at the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup in the UAE.
The coach maintains that Iheanacho’s best position on the pitch is not as an outright striker but a supporting striker.
He is impressed though with how the young Nigerian is adapting to his new role and expects him to blossom the more with regular playing time.
“At Leicester City, it took him almost a season to blend in because, at Leicester, their style of football is much quicker than where he was coming from,” Ugbade told Goal.
“Those of us who know Iheanacho understand that he is not a fast player but a highly intelligent player, trust me, he will continue to improve and score goals if he gets regular playing opportunities.”
“Before English football was suspended due to COVID-19, he got some goals, and you will agree with me that he has greatly improved – a far difference from the time he joined the club.
“I can only hope that by next season, he gets his feet completely right and continues to deliver.
“For those writing him off, it is so early because I can tell you for free that his future is extremely bright because he has not started yet.”