Super Eagles of Nigeria striker, Kelechi Iheanacho has opened up on his early struggles when he joined Leicester City.
Manchester City sold Iheanacho to the Foxes on a five-year contract worth £25 million, but he performed miserably when he joined which led to some critics questioning manager, Brendan Rodgers’ decision to not offload him.
His below par performances not only cost him a place in the Leicester squad but he was also axed from Gernot Rohr’s Nigeria team to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations squad staged in Egypt.
He is now in a rich vein of form and has scored 18 goals in 36 appearances to overtake Jamie Vardy as the club’s top scorer this season and says he is focused on just working hard.
Reflecting on his struggles to BBC Sport Africa, Iheanacho said: “I think a lot of people wrote me off, but I never lost faith in myself.
“I was going through a crazy and difficult time when things just didn’t work out for me.
“But I’ve worked extremely hard, and also have the manager and other staff at Leicester, and most importantly my brother and friend Wilfred [Ndidi] who stood by me.
“It’s been a really tough ride, but I’m just delighted it’s all come together for me.”
He added: “It was truly a bad patch and we all know that some people are always too quick to judge,” he continued.
“To hear some people come out now and start saying positive things again is only normal but I don’t even bother.
“I only have to prove to myself that I can do this consistently, continue to grow, help my club and country when I get the chance to play.
“We have a lot ahead of us. It’s that time of the season where you want to fight for everything in front of you and not get carried away.”
Iheanacho is expected to lead the Foxes’ attacking line-up against Chelsea in Saturday’s FA Cup final.
By Usman O.