The Nigerian forward was the best player in the league in March and has been nominated for April’s award after a string of excellent performances
Former Leicester City midfielder Keith Gillespie says Kelechi Iheanacho looks like a completely different player capable of delivering consistently fantastic performances for the Foxes.
But Gillespie believes that Brendan Rodgers affording Iheanacho more playing time boosted the Nigerian’s confidence and led to him discovering his once lost goalscoring touch.
Iheanacho was only a teenager without prior playing experience in Europe when he notched eight Premier League goals for Manchester City in his maiden campaign there.
Four more goals in just five starts the following season convinced Leicester City to part with £25 million and acquired the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup winner.
But with Englishman Jamie Vardy the undisputed number nine for Leicester for so many years, Iheanacho found game time hard to come by at the King Power Stadium.
In his first three years with the Foxes, the Super Eagles star saw less than 2000 minutes of action in the English top-flight with a meagre return of nine goals.
The first half of this season was no different as Iheanacho played a bit-part role for Brendan Rodgers’ side until injuries to key personnel forced the Irish manager to change tactic.
And Iheanacho has flourished in a supporting role to Jamie Vardy.
The Nigerian striker’s 14 goals and three assists in all competitions have powered Leicester City to the brink of Champions League football and the final of the FA Cup, leaving behind a genuinely impressed Gillespie.
“He’s been fantastic,” the former midfielder told ThisIsFootball.
“He just looks like somebody who’s got so much confidence now.
“You looked at the way Leicester played with Vardy and Maddison in behind him and couldn’t find a place for Iheanacho, and then suddenly, Maddison gets injured, and Iheanacho goes in behind Vardy.
“Iheanacho just looks like a different player now – skill, finishing, his touch, just everything. Getting that run of games has given him that confidence.”
Iheanacho’s brilliance this year has been rewarded after he was named the Premier League player of March. He is equally in line to be recognised as the league’s best player for April.