Ndidi – We’re here to contend
Wilfred Ndidi says Leicester's performance in Sunday's 1-1 draw at Chelsea shows they are ready to "contend" this season.
After opening the campaign with a scoreless draw at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers, the Foxes travelled to Stamford Bridge aiming to take advantage of a tired Blues side.
Frank Lampard’s men went the full 120 minutes in Wednesday’s UEFA Super Cup defeat to Liverpool in Istanbul but started brightly and took the lead after just seven minutes through Mason Mount following an error by Ndidi.
In truth, it was the visitors who appeared to be the side struggling with the pace of the game ahead of the interval. However, they came out of the break with additional vigour and took the match to their hosts.
Leicester were rewarded on 67 minutes when the Nigerian rose above the defence to power home a header.
At 1-1, Brendan Rodgers’ side looked the most likely to go on and get a result but it was not to be, and they had to settle for a point.
Leicester next face recently promoted Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on Saturday, with an EFL Cup tie at Newcastle and a visit of Bournemouth their other fixtures ahead of the first international break of the season.
A strong end to last term under Rodgers and some excellent work in the transfer market have seen the men from the King Power Stadium tipped to challenge for the top six.
The fact they kept tabs on a team like Chelsea will undoubtedly give them confidence. While the Blues are undoubtedly going through a transitional phase, the visitors on Sunday both outthought and outfought their hosts.
If they are to continue with the attacking brand of football that suited them so well towards the back end of last term, Ndidi’s role in the middle of midfield will be crucial as he looks to offer protection to the back-four.
The Nigerian said his side were disappointed by the outcome of their trip to the Bridge, especially the first half in which they failed to live up to their own high standards.
“As I said, it was a mixed feeling because we should have got the three points even after the first half,” he told the club’s website.
“We’re not here to compete, we’re here to contend. All of the guys have a good spirit and we know what we want this season.
“Getting this point, we’re not really happy, we’re kind of sad because we dominated the second half which could have brought a better result for us.”