Brendan Rodgers hails James Maddison after Leicester’s FA Cup win at Brentford

PA

Brendan Rodgers hailed the hunger and enthusiasm of James Maddison after the England midfielder helped Leicester avoid an FA Cup shock at Brentford.

The Foxes were trailing to Mads Bech Sorensen’s early goal when Maddison grabbed the fourth-round tie by the scruff of the neck

Just 48 seconds into the second half Maddison jinked his way to the edge of the area before teeing up Cengiz Under to drill in the equaliser.

Youri Tielemans then added a second from the penalty spot after he was fouled by Tariqe Fosu.

And Maddison wrapped up a 3-1 win with a tap-in after Harvey Barnes’ shot was saved.

Foxes boss Rodgers made eight changes to his starting line-up but kept in Maddison and Tielemans, and he said: “They are players that love football.

“James missed a bit of football at the beginning of the season, but he’s now back in and a player who needs rhythm, wants to play.

“He has a wonderful enthusiasm for football, he plays with that joy.

“But he’s becoming really consistent as well. He has a real hunger and desire to succeed and he’s well on the path to doing that.”

Rodgers was further boosted by the news top scorer Jamie Vardy could be back in action within a fortnight after having hernia surgery on Saturday.

“He had the op yesterday,” added Rodgers. “The likelihood is a week to 10 days before he’s back onto the pitch and then a few days more before he’s available.

“He won’t lose too much fitness, it’s a minor op and hopefully he’ll be fit for the rest of the season.”

The Championship Bees had shocked four Premier League sides on their way to this season’s Carabao Cup semi-finals.

But they can now concentrate on building another push for promotion following last season’s play-off final agony.

Boss Thomas Frank said: “We delivered a decent performance, especially in the first half. But you always talk about how they will make a fast start in the second half.

“It was a bit of magic by Maddison – what a player by the way. His development has been fantastic.

“That assist, his reaction was so quick, his touch and decision making are incredible and so is his work rate. That’s what makes him a top, top player.”

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