Slovan Liberec defender Justen Kranthove has revealed his disappointment at not being able to breakthrough at Leicester City earlier in his career.
The 21-year-old is currently plying his career in the Czech Republic after signing for Slovan on a free transfer in July 2021 after a year without a club.
Before that, he had been at Leicester for two years, first joining their Under 18s from AFC ’34 Alkmaar U19s in 2018.
He would quickly make his way up the ranks at Leicester from that point, making 19 appearances for the U18s before being promoted to the Under 23s in 2019.
He would fail to make a single appearance at that level, though, and instead was released on a free transfer in July 2020, spending a year in the wilderness before his move to Slovan last year.
It was not how he would have envisioned things going for him, and he admits that it came down to the club changing their plans under Brendan Rodgers.
“I was already in my last contract year. After Brendan Rodgers came, you saw the changes at the club,” he told Voetbal Primeur.
“They also scout differently now, and you can see that in Leicester’s soccer. It’s no longer holding back, shooting everything forward and playing on the counter; you need more now to get into the first team.
“I did find it remarkable because, in my last year, I trained quite a lot with the first team.
“I spoke with Rodgers several times; he thought I was very good football-wise, and from his assistant Kolo Touré I often got extra training. It’s a pity it was my last year because maybe things would have changed for me.
“But yes, that’s soccer. I spoke with the head of youth programs, but he stood the same as the trainer of O23 and wanted more older players. Everything changed after me, and those other guys left.
“What was behind that? They were boys of seventeen, eighteen. There’s a big gap in between. The players now are much younger because they sent away guys my age.”