Talking Tactics

Second-season stars: Sky the limit for Dewsbury-Hall

By Adrian Clarke 1 Jul 2022
Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall, Leicester v3

Adrian Clarke says Leicester playmaker can develop into a top all-round Premier League midfielder

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Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall (LEI)

Arguably the biggest success story of Leicester City's 2021/22 campaign was the emergence of the 23-year-old academy graduate.

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Dewsbury-Hall, who joined the club at the age of eight, had to be extremely patient to wait for a chance to establish himself in the Foxes' starting XI.

But once he made the breakthrough last term, he instantly became a must-pick for Brendan Rodgers.

Making 28 Premier League appearances in central midfield and 44 across all competitions, Dewsbury-Hall was voted Leicester's Players' Player of the Year by his peers.

Ahead of the new season he has penned a new five-year contract to stay at King Power Stadium, with many now tipping him to be a future club captain.

Leicester passing stats 2021/22
Successful passes into final third Successful passes in opposition half
Dewsbury-Hall 13.68 Tielemans 26.46
Tielemans 12.31 Dewsbury-Hall 24.33
Barnes 10.60 Mendy 22.65
Maddison 10.11 Pereira 18.96
Lookman 9.70 Justin 18.87

One of the facets of Dewsbury-Hall's game that brought added value to Leicester's play was his willingness to look up and pick out a forward pass.

When it is on to do so the former Blackpool and Luton Town loanee does not hesitate to feed the ball into players who are ahead of him on the pitch.

His confidence and technical ability enables the Foxes forwards to receive the ball earlier in those key advanced areas.

Dewsbury-Hall goal v Palace

Rodgers deployed Dewsbury-Hall as an orthodox box-to-box central midfielder, as a defensive midfielder, and, towards the latter stages of last season, also as an attacking midfielder.

That adaptability is a huge plus for the Leicester manager, who must have been impressed by Dewsbury-Hall's rounded qualities.

Chances created and possession won
Chances created in open play Possession won per 90
Dewsbury-Hall 1.45 Ndidi 9.17
Lookman 1.36 Evans 7.00
Maddison 1.31 Dewsbury-Hall 6.63
Barnes 1.24 Tielemans 6.43
Tielemans 1.16 Lookman 6.30

In a side containing high-class creative talents such as James Maddison, Youri Tielemans and Harvey Barnes, it was Dewsbury-Hall who came up with the most key passes per 90 minutes in open play.

Adept at feeding the right type of passes into attackers, the former youth-team star is excellent inside the final third.

To further highlight his broad range, Dewsbury-Hall also regains possession 6.63 times per 90 minutes, a tally bettered by only Wilfred Ndidi and Jonny Evans for the Foxes.

Leicester running stats 2021/22
Player Distance/90
Dewsbury-Hall 11.90
Mendy 11.80
Justin 11.30
Albrighton 11.20
Tielemans 11.10
Castagne 10.90

This breakthrough talent is also incredibly hardworking, which fits well with Rodgers' high-tempo philosophy.

Averaging almost 12km per match, he gets around the pitch very effectively.

Until last season we had not seen much of Dewsbury-Hall but it would be a huge surprise if he is not a fixture in Leicester's first-choice XI again this season.

If his progress continues, he could develop into one of the best all-round midfielders in the division.

Also in this series

Part 1: Michael Olise (CRY)
Part 3: Joe Gelhardt (LEE)
Part 4: Trevoh Chalobah (CHE)

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