Leicester confident Europa League game against Napoli will go ahead despite Covid-19 and illness issues

Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers has confirmed seven players and three members of staff have not travelled to Italy for Thursday's Europa League game against Napoli; Kelechi Iheanacho, Ademola Lookman, Daniel Amartey and Jannik Vestergaard are among those who were not on the plane to Naples

Leicester players congratulate Jamie Vardy after putting them 3-1 up
Image: Leicester are confident their Europa League game against Napoli will go ahead

Leicester City are confident their Europa League game against Napoli will go ahead on Thursday, despite a mixture of Covid-19 and illness issues seriously depleting their squad.

Sky Sports News has been told the situation is not comparable with the one that has devastated the Tottenham squad, but Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers has confirmed seven players and three members of staff have not travelled to Italy.

Kelechi Iheanacho, Ademola Lookman, Daniel Amartey and Jannik Vestergaard are among those who were not on the plane to Naples, although Youri Tielemans is available again after missing five games with a calf strain.

Youri Tielemans
Image: Youri Tielemans is in contention to play in Naples

Leicester have introduced extra Covid-secure measures to try to stem the outbreak. Every member of the squad is testing more often, including before the flight to Italy and again before they left the hotel for training at the Estadio Diego Armando Maradona.

Speaking ahead of the match, Rodgers said: "We've had a number of people, staff and players, who haven't travelled. We've had some positive (Covid) cases, some are generally not well, so we haven't taken the risk."

When asked to specify which players had been taken ill, Rodgers added: "That's something you will see in time. We will have seven unavailable.

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"It's been [over the] last few days really. In general, you're starting to see a few more cases and, for us, it's always about the health of our players.

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"Travelling to a foreign country, we have to respect travelling into Italy. We still have a strong squad here, but unfortunately it's not a fully-fit squad."

Leicester need a draw in Naples to progress to the knockout stages of the Europa League. A win would see them go through as Group C winners.

Leicester play Newcastle in the Premier League on Sunday, live on Sky Sports, before facing Tottenham next Thursday.

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    Europa League permutations

    Should Leicester lose to the Serie A title challengers, their passage to the knockout phase will hinge on the result between Legia Warsaw and Spartak Moscow.

    The Foxes let slip a 2-0 lead and were denied victory in the home game against Napoli in September by Victor Osimhen's late equaliser, while their only group defeat came in Warsaw later that month.

    Napoli sit third in the table after losing 2-1 in Moscow in November. Victory could see them qualify as group winners and with so many permutations it is a game they too cannot afford to lose.

    How to follow

    Follow Napoli vs Leicester with our dedicated live blog across Sky Sports' digital platforms.

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