Leicester City midfielder Matty James underwent surgery on his Achilles tendon and, as a result, is set to miss the remainder of the season. The injury was a recurrence of the one that kept him out of 15 matches earlier this season. Manager Claude Puel said he expects James to be fit to start the 2018/19 season.
CP: “Matty James will have surgery on his Achilles tendon. He will not be available for the rest of this season.” #LeiNew pic.twitter.com/U7s4nvQfNV— Leicester City (@LCFC) April 5, 2018
This is yet another setback for the former Manchester United man, who suffered a knee injury in the midst of the “great escape” in May of 2015. The severity of the injury kept him out of the entire 2015/16 championship-winning season. James returned for one match in 2016/17, spending the majority of the season on loan at Barnsley before returning to the Foxes’ first team to start the current season.
The hard-luck Bacup native has now featured in only 9 league matches for City over the past 3 years, so it’s easy to forget just how important he has been for the Foxes. James’ midfield partnership with Danny Drinkwater helped Leicester amass a staggering 102 points in the League Championship in 2013/14, winning the league by 9 points. The following season, it was James and not Drinkwater who played alongside Argentine legend Esteban Cambiasso in the centre of the park.
James’ new injury leaves Puel with a headache in midfield. Wilfred Ndidi will miss the Newcastle and Burnley games through suspension, and Daniel Amartey remains unavailable due to injury. The former Southampton manager will likely draft one or more of Steve Beaglehole’s U23s into the first team squad, with Hamza Choudhury the most likely candidate.
The Loughborough born 20 year old made his Premier League debut earlier this season as a late substitute in the win over Tottenham Hotspur and could see a similar role again behind Iborra and Silva.