Kasper Schmeichel

Key Figures On Media Duty As UEL Opener Draws Closer

LCFC Training Ground played host to a busy day of pre-match training and media duties on Wednesday as Leicester City braced themselves for their UEFA Europa League Group C opener against Italian powerhouses Napoli.
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It’s been 202 days since Leicester City last competed in the Europa League, however the Blue Army have previously been made to wait much longer to watch their side compete on the European stage.

It is the first time in the Club’s history that the Foxes have contested in back-to-back European campaigns – a signal of their success in recent seasons and their continued desire to challenge England’s elite teams.

Napoli are first up at Leicester City Stadium on Thursday night, and it is a match which promises to be a memorable occasion for those in attendance as City entertain the two-time champions of Italy.

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Jamie Vardy
Jamie Vardy

Leicester's all-time Premier League goalscorer gears up for his third European campaign with the Club.

The build-up to a European fixture is like no other. Pre-match preparations attract plenty of interest from across the continent, while media duties for both sides draw in international press, who join via video call to speak to key figures from Leicester’s camp.

Up first on the top table for Leicester was goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, who in his 10 years at the Football Club has lifted the Championship, Premier League, FA Cup and FA Community Shield trophies.

He has undoubtedly been one of the Foxes’ most consistent performers over the past decade, and spoke of Leicester's strengths when asked about the quality of sides they will face in this term's tournament. 

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Brendan Rodgers
Brendan Rodgers

The Leicester City manager followed Kasper Schmeichel in addressing the media.

"It’s never been our approach to look at others, we look to ourselves," he said at LCFC Training Ground. "When I look into our changing room, I’m supremely confident. There are top-class teams in this competition. For us, the most important thing we’ve always done is look inwards."

The Denmark stopper was soon followed by manager Brendan Rodgers, who spoke of Napoli's European pedigree: "They’ve got great experience over recent years in every competition. They arrive in the Europa League probably as one of the favourites to do well in it. They’re a very good side with a lot of experience and quality."

Later in the evening, opponents Napoli completed their media obligations at Leicester City Stadium, with manager Luciano Spalletti and midfielder André-Frank Zambo Anguissa discussing the upcoming tie.

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Timothy Castagne
Timothy Castagne

The Foxes trained in Seagrave on Wednesday in preparation for their Group C clash.

Asked how Napoli will approach this season's competition, Spalletti said: "The main thing is being credible with the players. We've spent two months trying to find something attractive, something that will stimulate the players so that they will give the maximum when they are wearing a Napoli shirt."

Zambo Anguissa, on loan from Fulham, replied when quizzed about Jamie Vardy's threat: "We have to think like a team. Everybody can be dangerous, not only Vardy. We know that he is the best striker, but we are focused on everybody - all of their team. To win the game, you don't have to think about only one player. Of course, Vardy, is dangerous. He's their best striker. For us, we're going to play against Leicester, so we have to be focused on their team."

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