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Rodgers hails Vardy as Leicester 'legend' joins 100 club

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Jamie Vardy. Photo: Reuters

Jamie Vardy. Photo: Reuters

REUTERS

Jamie Vardy. Photo: Reuters

Brendan Rodgers hailed Jamie Vardy as a Leicester City legend after the striker became the latest entrant into the Premier League 100 club.

Vardy netted his 100th and 101st top-flight goals to help Leicester get their season back on track with Saturday's crucial 3-0 victory over Crystal Palace. The 33-year-old had not scored since the restart, but twice benefited from passes by substitute Harvey Barnes.

With Leicester already leading through a Kelechi Iheanacho goal, Vardy struck twice in the final 13 minutes to reach his latest milestone. Goal number 100 was a simple tap-in after a Mamadou Sakho error allowed Barnes to square the ball to him, but his 101st was a much smarter finish, after the striker had raced on to a pass down the left channel.

"He's a legend now for the rest of his time at the club, it's just about what he adds to that status over the remainder of his career," said Rodgers.

"I'm just very fortunate to have him. He suits the profile of player I like in my team, who's dynamic and works tirelessly."

Four years ago, Vardy turned down a switch to Arsenal while other members of the 2016 title-winning team, such as N'Golo Kante, Riyad Mahrez and Danny Drinkwater, made big-money moves.

"It's hard to knock some players if they want to move on, their careers are so short, but Jamie has felt really comfortable here," Rodgers said. "He has found a real home here, he's adored by the supporters. Jamie is an example that if you decide to stay you can still continue to grow and develop."

Vardy insisted that he would not celebrate his 100 goals before the end of the season and Rodgers believes he has got the former England international at a good time in his career.

The former non-League player previously revealed how he would make home-made cocktails of vodka and Skittles, but Rodgers said: "I find Jamie unique in his journey, but as a player I have probably got him when he's not so wild. Maybe I've got him at the right time. He's a lot more sensible now, he's a father and settled and happily married and everything else."

It was in some way fitting that Vardy achieved his feat in front of Roy Hodgson, the Palace manager.

It was Hodgson who gave Vardy his England debut and took him to the 2016 European Championship during his time as national team manager.

"He was someone who knew where he was going, he knew what he needed to do to succeed," Hodgson said. "Leicester City's success has had Jamie Vardy's name pretty strongly imprinted on it. We kept him quiet but that doesn't matter because the scoreline reads 3-0 and Jamie's got two goals."

© Daily Telegraph, London

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