Soyuncu and Fofana are top players… but Leicester need orchestrator Jonny Evans back to beat Chelsea in FA Cup final

LEICESTER’S chances of winning their first FA Cup will be dampened if Jonny Evans is not fit.

Brendan Rodgers has come out and said that even if the Northern Irishman is not 100 per cent, he will be on the pitch at Wembley.

And that is because he knows just how instrumental he is to this Foxes side.

Since their 3-1 home defeat to Arsenal in February, Rodgers changed Leicester to a 3-4-1-2 formation.

Injuries to wide players Harvey Barnes and Ayoze Perez forced his hand into playing wing-backs.

The switch saw Kelechi Iheanacho come into the side alongside Jamie Vardy and we all know how well he has done.

But what it also did was show Evans’ worth to this team as he became the orchestrator of the three-man defence.

Sitting in the middle, he would have Wesley Fofana and Caglar Soyuncu on strings by allowing them to go man for man while he sweeps up the rest.

In the six games they played together, Leicester won five, drew one and only conceded three goals.

And when he was taken out of the side due to injury they shipped four goals for the first time this season against Newcastle.

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There is no doubt both Soyuncu and Fofana are outstanding defenders and examples of Leicester’s amazing business model of developing great players.

But despite their quality it was clear they were lacking the leadership and communication which Evans brings to the table.

So the difference he makes to this side is humongous.

The fact that Foxes boss Rodgers went and reverted to a back four against Manchester United tells me the Newcastle defeat showed Evans’ importance to the system.

They may have got a result, but no disrespect, it was not United’s strongest team.

But at Wembley they will be coming up against a full-strength Chelsea side who have pace, movement and quality.

And with Blues manager Thomas Tuchel opting to play without a recognised striker, that leadership and communication becomes vital.

As the reason for playing a false nine is to try and pull defenders out of position to make space for midfield runners.


So if Evans falls short in his race to be fit, it could go horribly wrong — as no one will be there to keep  Soyuncu and Fofana in check.

This final will feature two football teams who are both more comfortable on the counter.

But the onus will be on Chelsea to dominate — which could play into Leicester’s advantage.

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