Leicester City have spent the last month playing twice a week and we’ve got so used to the pattern it’s produced that I was almost rocked to sleep by the wild swings back and forth between resounding victory and crushing defeat.
It was an odd fall back to earth then as the frantic stretch ended in a dull encounter with Southampton, 0-0. After a run like that, it would be understandable for some players to be feeling a little tired, and plenty of them looked it.
Roll on the international break. It’s not quite the week off for our squad it used to be, but it is a chance to catch a much needed second wind.
Kasper Schmeichel - 9
Made some top drawer saves and absolutely earned his team a point. Other parts of his game don’t match up to his shot-stopping, so when things are quiet you can forget how good he can be (it’s very good).
.@kschmeichel1 wasn't fooled by @chazaustin10 https://t.co/3F3r8LE0EG— NBC Sports Soccer (@NBCSportsSoccer) October 2, 2016
Danny Simpson - 7
Couldn’t really match Charlie Austin in the air, but that’s not what he’s in the team for. Kept threats from the right fairly quiet and made a number of key clearances. They weren’t always pretty, but it would’ve been worse if he wasn’t there.
Wes Morgan - 6
Not a bad performance by any means. They did keep a clean sheet against a team in good form, remember. But not at the standard the captain set for himself last year.
He looks like he had a good summer - Mark Lawrenson on Morgan’s lack of sharpness...and his Captain Morgan deal
Robert Huth - 6
Again not at his best, but did keep away opposition threats mostly. Both CBs will be glad for the break, I expect.
Christian Fuchs - 6
A solid outing, with few real mistakes, but crosses were coming in from his side. No real attacking impact again, save for his throws, which are definitely a useful asset.
Riyad Mahrez - 7
Not quite at his best, but I think that was more down to the lack of help he got than any failing of his own. Took on the defence all by himself a couple of times and nearly won.
Danny Drinkwater - 6
For the first 20-30 minutes it was a good game, both sides were in it and Drinky was putting Leicester in the right position. None of those things lasted, however. Left out of the England squad, probably due to tiredness rather than a real issue, and frankly I’m glad. He’s being overplayed.
Kane, Butland, Drinkwater, Lallana, Clyne and Shaw all unavailable through injury for Southgate. #eng— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) October 2, 2016
Daniel Amartey - 6
Not quite the force he’s been in other home games. He didn’t drop off as much as the game wore on, but he wasn’t as involved as his midfield partner either.
Marc Albrighton - 5
His industry is fine, and we saw against Hull that it’s necessary too. But he isn’t creating chances and in this game he was sloppy. His poor touch gave the ball away and ended attacks prematurely.
Islam Slimani - 7
José Fonte is a tough draw for a big physical striker like Slimani, but he held his own. His energy and pressing were impressive again, even if his quality wasn’t quite there.
Jamie Vardy - 6
Much like Slimani, he pressed well and his pace is a threat that won’t go in and out of form. He worried defenders. But he got a fantastic opportunity, that last year’s player would have scored every time, and he never looked like taking it. He wasn’t confident, he waited too long, and the best chance of the game was gone.
Shinji Okazaki - 6
A scrappy performance, and nearly a goal to match it, but he wasn’t really able to change the game as his manager would have liked. He’s a great team player, but if the team isn’t getting it right, he won't win by himself much.
Demarai Gray - 6
Now here’s a man who’s shown that he is capable of doing it alone, but he also failed to make any real impact on the game.
Leonardo Ulloa - 5
Added nothing to the game at all.
No doubt my Man of the Match was Kasper Schmeichel. Kept his team in a game that could’ve got away from them.