Leicester City defeated Manchester City by a score of 2-1 on a chilly Boxing Day afternoon at the King Power. Bernado Silva opened the scoring for the Citizens, but a quick response from Marc Albrighton and a late stunner from Ricardo Pereira secured the three points for the Foxes.
What a result that is, forget all the title talk, it’s been a massive 2 results for us. Gone back to what we know with a little more graft and less flair, and it’s working a treat...GET IN!!! #LCFC— Rizwan (@RizLCFC) December 26, 2018
I apologize in advance for what you’re about to read:
T’was the day after Christmas, as some call it “Boxing Day”,
Puel selected the same XI who started on Saturday!”
“On Schmeichel, on Ricardo, on Morgan and Maguire,
On Chilwell, on Choudhury, on Ndidi (who’s on fire!)
On Mendy, on Madders, on Marc Albrighton,
On Vardy, the striker who scores just for fun!”
The match it was open, the match it was quick,
Both sides were a menace, both defenses looked sick.
The men from both shades of blue went up and down the pitch,
A goal would be coming, but for which team? Which?
The visitors, it turned out, would strike the first blow.
A pass from LaPorte found Kun Aguer-o,
His pass to B. Silva was ever so clever,
Would Kasper save it? Alas, no, never.
Things began to look grim, they began to look dark,
The slightest of hushes infected the park.
But a long cross-field ball found Vardy on the wing,
His cross to Albrighton! A goal! The crowd sings!
For the rest of the half it was all to the Foxes,
We dominated play in both of the boxes.
Going close to scoring through Hamza and Madders,
But neither could score and that’s all that matters.
Going in to the half, level on score,
You can’t help but thinking “We could have had more.”
The second half started, a cagey affair,
Both sides being careful, both sides lacking flair.
The Citizens were starting to knock at the door,
It seemed to be when, not if they would score.
Puel remained bold in his changes that day,
Withdrawing Choudhury and sending on Gray.
Leicester’s defending was good, this observer must say,
It had to be as the traffic was largely one-way.
A quarter-hour to go, one the edge of a knife,
Which side would score next and bring the match back to life?
Madders seldom goes ninety, so his race was run,
As Puel pulled him off for Danny Simp-son.
The clock showing 80, a corner was won,
But poor was the cross by Marc Albrigh-ton.
The first man cleared it at the first go,
But his header was directly to Ric-ard-o,
The Portugese full back lined up his shot,
And lashed in a bullet no keeper could stop.
Five minutes from time, we needed some help,
Okazaki came on; the ref sent off Delph.
Four more minutes of time would be added to play,
Could we hold them off, could we keep them at bay?
The answer was “yes”, we could and we did!
A win on Boxing Day? Surely you kid!
So Leicester defeated mighty Manchester City,
Three points are three points, no matter how pretty.
I’m not going to lie; after the defeat to Crystal Palace I’d written off the matches at Chelsea and at home to Manchester City as almost certain losses. We looked a shambles and the “Puel out” crowd were in ascendancy. How did we turn it around and pull two victories out of the bag when we were playing so poorly coming in to this stretch?
Two things come to mind: A change in formation, going to a 4-3-3 with Vardy playing on the left side and Madders as a false nine in the middle, and the introduction of Hamza Choudhury into the squad. The academy product has now started two matches in the Premier League, and you’d have to say the results have been decent, wouldn’t you? It’s also worth noting that we played the same starting XI in back-to-back league matches for the first time in forever. I was concerned that we’d see some tired legs out there today, but if we did, they were in light blue.
Once again, Ricardo and Albrigton were absolute gems on the right side for Leicester. Ndidi’s form has been off of late, so it was nice to see him chip in with a dominant performance. The central defensive pairing of Maguire and Morgan, other than that one lapse, were up to the challenge, and enough cannot be made of Vardy’s tireless running as an isolated figure up top.
The victory puts City on 28 points through 19 matches, good for 7th on the table pending Watford’s result. This being the half-way point, that puts us on pace for (*breaks out the calculator*) 56 points. This feels about like where I expected us to be, but we’ve arrived there in a fashion I hadn’t expected. Our next league match is at home to Cardiff City on Saturday, and then a visit to Merseyside to take on Everton on New Year’s Day.