Harvey Barnes may have to reinvent himself as a centre-forward

28 April 2021 07:45

This was not how things were supposed to finish for Harvey Barnes.

If last campaign was his breakout season, this was the year that he flirted with being a Premier League superstar. Now, thanks to a knee injury he picked up against Arsenal at the end of February, he could feasibly be forced to watch from the stands as the club he has been at since a youngster wins their first ever FA Cup and secures Champions League football.

Barnes was stretchered off against Arsenal | Michael Regan/Getty Images

Prior to his injury, Barnes was the Foxes' key man. Starting with a fine strike in his side's 2-2 draw with Manchester United on Boxing Day, Barnes managed six goals and three assists in the Premier League after Christmas.

Some of his contributions were decisive as well. With Leicester 1-0 down against bogey team Crystal Palace, Barnes scrapped his way through a crowd of red and blue shirts before firing a left-footed drive into the bottom corner with seven minutes to play. In addition, his clinical strike in the Foxes' 3-1 win over Liverpool in February killed the game off.

His electric winter form even positioned him as an outsider to make England's Euro 2020 squad and the fact that Gareth Southgate can now take 26 players would have strengthened Barnes' case. Yet, instead of jetting off around the continent in the summer, Barnes will be working hard behind the scenes, quietly plotting to come back stronger than ever next season.