Claude Puel

Claude Puel says he is not surprised fitness has been an issue for his Leicester players during a difficult period for the club.

Jamie Vardy is a major doubt for Leicester’s fixture against Brighton due to a groin injury, while Harry Maguire will miss out again following a knee injury.

Puel says it has been “tough” for players to prepare for games due to a number of factors, after owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha was among five killed in a helicopter crash following the 1-1 draw with West Ham last month.

“I think it’s a lot of things,” Puel said. “The two last games for Jamie and for the players, they give their best with tiredness, with travel to Bangkok and with all this emotion. With all those things, it was tough to prepare for the players.

“If we ever had some injury, a little injury, we can understand why.”

While James Maddison is back in training after a knee problem, Rachid Ghezzal is a doubt for the trip to the Amex after a knock.

Puel said on Thursday he feels the club must look to the future and restore focus on the football following an emotional month.

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