Kelechi Iheanacho has officially been named as the English Premier League’s Player of the Month for March 2021.
Iheanacho beat top stars like Harry Kane, Luke Shaw, Jesse Lingard, Riyad Mahrez, Andreas Christensen, Leandro Trossard and Illan Meslier to the coveted award on Friday.
He began March in fine style, scoring an excellent volley from compatriot Wilfred Ndidi’s pass as Leicester City forced Burnley to a draw at Turf Moor.
From there, Iheanacho, three days later, netted an equaliser against Brighton & Hove Albion. The Foxes would go on to win the game thanks to a late goal by Daniel Amartey.
Ihenacho continued his superb goal-scoring form as he bagged his first Premier League hat trick against manager-less Sheffield United on March 14.
It was not just in the league that Iheanacho was in fine scoring form. He also netted twice for the Foxes in the 3-1 FA Cup quarter-final victory against Manchester United, taking his tally for the month to seven.
With Friday’s feat, Iheanacho, 24, becomes the fourth Leicester player to win the Premier League’s Player of the Month award. The other recipients of the prize are Muzzy Izzet (Sept 1999), Tim Flowers (Sept 2000), and Jamie Vardy (Oct 2015, Nov 2015, April 2019, Oct 2019).
Reacting to winning the award for the first time in his career, Iheanacho told his club’s official website he was pleased and honoured to be voted the best player for the month.
“I’m so pleased and honoured to win this award. It’s great to be recognised, but I couldn’t have done it without the support of my team-mates and the manager.
“I’m really enjoying playing at the minute and hopefully I can push on and help the team to finish as high as possible this season.”
Iheanacho is the fourth Nigerian to scoop the prize, after Austin Jay-Jay Okocha (Nov 2003), Peter Odemwingie (Sept 2010, April 2011, Nov 2012), and Odion Ighalo (Dec 2015).
Having returned from international duty where he helped the Super Eagles to twin victories over the Benin Republic and Lesotho in the now-concluded AFCON qualifiers, Iheanacho will be hoping to continue from where he stopped when he faces his former team, Manchester City on Saturday.