Leicester manager Enzo Maresca says Patson Daka is capable of holding off Jamie Vardy and Kelechi Iheanacho when both strikers are fit again after scoring in the 3-2 win over Millwall.
Zambia international Daka netted for the second game running as the Foxes came from behind to secure a victory which sent them back to the top of the Championship table, moving them one point ahead of Ipswich.
It was only Daka’s second start of the season after having to wait for his chance with injured Vardy and ill Iheanacho both missing.
Maresca confirmed that Vardy’s knee issue will keep him out of Monday’s match at Birmingham, now managed by Wayne Rooney, but Iheanacho is set to be available.
The Italian says Daka, who will go to the African Cup of Nations next month, deserves to stay in the team.
“I’ve been quite clear with them,” said Maresca.
“If you’re playing, you deserve it. If someone comes in and they’re doing well, you need to work.
“Patson is scoring goals and working hard, after three or four months of having to wait. We’re going to trust him and give him more chances, no doubt.”
Millwall took the lead through Tom Bradshaw, but second-half goals from Jannik Vestergaard, Daka and Ricardo Pereira, whose shot was deflected in off Wilfred Ndidi, settled the game.
Maresca added: “It was a tough game. We expected them in one way. But since the new manager arrived, they have played always in a line of four. Here, they came here with a line of five and two holding midfielders.
“In the first half, we were in control of the game, but without creating clear chances. At half-time, we adjusted some things.
“Instead of attacking with five, we attacked with six. We brought one more player in the last line. It was much better second half for sure.”
A stoppage-time goal from Millwall substitute Kevin Nisbet proved no more than a consolation.
“We came here with with clear plan, which is all well and good, but the players have to execute it,” said Millwall manager Joe Edwards.
“I thought they did it to a tee in the first half. We had our moments. At half-time, we were pleased with our work and knew we’d given ourselves a chance.
“We felt confident we could go and do it again. But we conceded a sloppy goal, and after that we weren’t quick enough to things. Not clinical.
“Then we started playing well again in the last 10 minutes. For two minutes at the end, it’s game on.
“You’re always hoping to win, but a draw would’ve been a great result. We felt that if we came to Leicester with a high press and went toe to toe with them, we wouldn’t get any rewards by losing 4-0.
“But we felt we wanted to show we could offer a threat. It was a frustrated place at half-time, you could feel that. That’s what we came to do. The question then is ‘how long can we sustain it?’”