First things first, apologies for missing the Watford game. That said, would it be fair to just give everyone involved in that debacle a 0 and move on? Good, onto an important win over Brugge then.
A bit of an odd match, this one. We got throwback last season Leicester City in the first half, terrorizing their opponents with fast breaks and great wing play, and then reverted right back to this year’s model in the second half. They were passive, but slightly unsteady at the back and it nearly cost them a big result.
They didn’t however, and the group is won. This is particularly important because, with outrageous luck seemingly always on this team’s side (see: the group draw), I foresee a 100% chance that we will draw Benfica in the next round.
Ron-Robert Zieler - 6
The Brugge goal was hit hard and not at all easy to stop, but the backup keeper never looked particularly assured today. He appeared to have communication problems with the defence at times, which is particularly disappointing as we hadn’t seen that before.
Danny Simpson - 7
Another solid defensive showing from Simpson, who also actually added to the attack this time. He put a couple of dangerous balls into the box, which is a big output for someone picked purely for defence.
Wes Morgan - 7
Nearly caught out by pacey attackers a couple of times but, well, he wasn’t. Made a number of important clearances and generally looked pretty assured. For the first 60 or so minutes, anyway.
MORGAN: "For a club like #lcfc to finish top of our #ucl group is an amazing achievement. Been better than we could have imagined." #LeiClu— Leicester City (@LCFC) November 22, 2016
Robert Huth - 7
Much like Morgan, he was commanding to start the game and looked unbeatable. Once the midfield started leaking the pressure became unrelenting so cracks started to show, but importantly they didn't concede again.
Christian Fuchs - 8
If anyone is to blame for their goal, you could argue it’s the Austrian, but that would be a stretch. With defenders scrambling to cover our other attacking options, Fuchs was left alone and made them pay with a number of dangerous crosses.
Christian is always looking for me and it was a great pass, so I am very grateful to him - I’m pretty sure Shinji always has something nice to say, but he’s not wrong here
Riyad Mahrez - 8
Riyad’s best game in a while. He ran at his fullback, past his fullback, scored a penalty and at times his link up play with Shinji was breathtaking.
Danny Drinkwater - 7
Ran the show again in the first half. His defensive numbers weren’t impressive, but that’s to be expected when we dominate possession. He had 20 more touches than any other player and generally controlled the tempo, but could have done more to keep control of the game later on.
Andy King - 7
Possibly his best game with the ball this year (he played some beautiful long passes out to the wings) was accompanied by a slightly lacklustre defensive display, especially once Brugge really started to come forwards.
Job done! Brilliant from the boys to top the group and into the last 16. Great atmosphere tonight #LCFC pic.twitter.com/8l1OQXapWD— Andy King (@10_kingy) November 22, 2016
Marc Albrighton - 9
Young fullback Dion Cools was completely out of his depth against Albrighton. He fouled him for the penalty, but was also beaten time and time again on the Leicester left. The right footed winger was probably less effective when switched to the right, but continued to run well at defenders and provide balls into dangerous areas.
Shinji Okazaki - 8
Once again Shinji showed us what this team can look like at its best. He was involved in lots of build up play and his goal was very well taken.
6 - Shinji Okazaki is the 6th Japanese player to score a Champions League goal and the first since Keisuke Honda in November 2013. Opener.— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) November 22, 2016
Jamie Vardy - 7
In the first half, Vardy was pestering defenders at his best, winning the ball inside the opposition penalty area. He wasn’t getting to the front post enough to meet the stream of crosses coming in. If he had, he might have broken this goalless streak.
Jeff Schlupp - 6
Brought on to try and bring some control into the game. That’s a bit like trying to control fire with gasoline but it sort of work at times.
Demarai Gray - 6
Hard to judge that performance. He put in a number of great runs and bits off skill to give himself some fantastic chances to kill the game off, but he couldn’t take any of them.
Daniel Amartey - 7
A late introduction to sit in front of the back four, he did at least more than the others to stem the flow of Brugge attacks.
Overall, it was another incomplete performance from a team that needs to start keeping their levels up for 90 minutes. Ultimately though, they did hold on for the win, at least in part thanks to the great start given to them by Man of the Match Marc Albrighton.