Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers believes Luke Thomas’ first senior goal for the club will give the young defender “huge confidence”.
The 19-year-old netted in Thursday’s 3-3 draw against Braga in Portugal as the Foxes sealed qualification for the round of 32 in the Europa League.
Thomas was on hand to turn in James Maddison’s low, driven cross from close range to make the score 2-2 with 12 minutes remaining.
Rodgers thinks the goal will stand the teenager in good stead during what could be his breakthrough season at the King Power Stadium.
“Of course it will give him huge confidence,” said the Foxes boss. “He’s a very good defender, for a young guy, very brave, and you see with the quality of his football that he’s a very good footballer.
“Part of his role in that position is to get up and score goals. He’s been with us since we came back towards the end of last season and has become a very valuable member of our squad.
“He still has a lot of improvements to make but that will come with experience and time. But it’s a great moment for him to get his first goal.”
Thomas reflected on the moment he scored for his boyhood team before insisting Leicester now have their sights set on topping Group G.
“It was very special,” the teenager told the club website. “It’s obviously a dream come true with Leicester being my home town.
“Obviously, playing for Leicester is the best feeling that there could possibly be. Getting my first goal for the club, I’m over the moon with it.
“All the lads are buzzing after qualifying, it’s a great feeling for the team, but we spoke in the changing rooms after about it and we’ve not topped the group yet.
“We are looking to go into next week and hopefully get three points and top the group.”