James Justin needed a stretcher to leave the field after appearing to damage his knee in Leicester’s 1-0 win over Brighton in the FA Cup fifth round.
Leicester had to dig deep for the victory, with Kelechi Iheanacho popping up with the winner deep into second-half injury time, but many fans were more concerned about Justin, who had landed awkwardly on his knee 20 minutes earlier.
The versatile 22-year-old, who was playing as a centre-back this time, looked in real discomfort as he landed, and the sight of a stretcher only made things look worse.
Fortunately, manager Brendan Rodgers revealed after the game that things looked a lot worse than they actually were, and there is optimism that the Englishman has avoided anything serious.
“Hopefully it’s not as bad as first seemed,” Rodgers said (via Leicester Mercury). “He said he could have walked off. After five minutes in the changing room it eased up for him. He just heard something in his knee when he landed.
“It’s a bit early (to diagnose the injury). On inspection, the guys are confident there it’s nothing major. We will see how he is in the morning. Fingers crossed it’s not as bad as it looked.”
Justin has been one of the breakout stars of the Premier League this season. Having only really broken into the side after lockdown interrupted the 2019/20 season, the 22-year-old has been a mainstay this year, helping out all over Leicester’s back line.
Predominantly a right-back, Justin has spent most of his time out on the left this year, with the equally excellent Timothy Castagne impressing on the right. He has helped Leicester establish themselves as genuine top-four contenders, even chipping in with two goals and two assists for good measure.
Because of his ability to keep clean sheets as well as pop up with goals at the other end of the pitch, Justin is a popular choice among Fantasy Premier League managers, many of whom will be sweating over his fitness.
If Justin finds himself forced into a period on the sidelines, finding somebody to fill the void he leaves behind is no easy task, but there are plenty of good options who should be considered for the job.
West Ham’s Aaron Cresswell continues to shine, as do Leeds’ Stuart Dallas and Aston Villa’s Matt Targett. However, if you can find a little bit of extra cash to splash, think about turning to either of Manchester City duo Ruben Dias and Joao Cancelo.
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