Brendan Rodgers believed Leicester City lacked “personality” as they suffered a 2-1 defeat to Everton at the King Power Stadium.
Leicester were back in Premier League action following their Europa Conference League elimination by Roma at the semi-final stage. Back on home soil, they returned to disappointment with a loss against Everton – who in turn boosted their survival chances.
For the Foxes, there is nothing left to play for but pride after what has been an exhausting season. But they did not display the appropriate qualities against Everton.
Vitaliy Mykolenko put the visitors ahead inside six minutes, before Patson Daka pulled one back five minutes after. However, Everton restored their advantage when Mason Holgate scored in the 30th minute.
Leicester have subsequently gone seven games without a win in all competitions. It seems their season, despite some promise not so long ago, is ending with a whimper.
Rodgers takes responsibility for some of their flaws, naming their defending of set pieces as one key concern. But he thinks they needed more personality on the pitch, like the absent James Maddison would have been able to provide.
Rodgers told BBC Sport: “It is a reflection of the way we shot ourselves in the foot so many times this season. That is my responsibility.
“We tried to find different ways not to concede from set pieces. We have to concentrate more but the corners have been an ongoing issue.
“The confidence in the team in dealing with those situations isn’t there. Very disappointing result and performance.
“We missed James Maddison today because he has that personality and talent and today we lacked that.”
Brendan Rodgers reveals post-match message
Rodgers then revealed words were said in the dressing room after the game. But he maintains belief in his group of players, who have made significant progress under his tenure.
He is ready for them to get back to work, though, after an apology to the supporters.
The manager added: “I was interested in the thoughts of the team and a few honest words. They’re a great bunch. I think back to where we were and three years on we’re disappointed not to win a trophy this season.
“But you need the hunger and desire as well as talent and we haven’t seen that. We have to take responsibility and I do.
“We need to get into the training ground tomorrow and put things right. I felt sorry for the supporters today and we need to correct that.”
Leicester’s next game will be against relegated Norwich City at home on Wednesday night.