Leicester City are now, technically, on a two game winning run, after their first league win of the year was followed by a shootout win over Newcastle United on Wednesday. This Saturday they’ll be looking to keep that going against Bournemouth, so here are some areas the game could be decided.
1. Limit the fouls
The Foxes were a little rash in their tackles during the midweek cup encounter; Söyüncü, Morgan and Choudhury were all booked in the first half, while a free kick given away in the 2nd led directly to the Magpies’ equaliser.
Matt Ritchie has been absolutely destroyed by Hamza Choudhury in a huge tackle.— Owynn Palmer-Atkin (@OwynnPA) August 28, 2019
Love to see it don't ya.
In their next game they face Bournemouth, who have scored just one goal from open play so far. Their others coming from a penalty, a direct freekick and an indirect freekick.
The Cherries have a couple of very effective set piece takers in Harry Wilson and Ryan Fraser, but are struggling to create good chances otherwise. As much as the team loves to get stuck in to recycle possession, it might be wiser to stand off a little more this time.
2. James Maddison vs interceptions
Jamie Vardy managed to open his scoring account for the season last weekend after latching onto a long through ball from James Maddison. If the Foxes are to start create more high quality chances, they’ll be looking to Madders, and Tielemans to an extent, to start sliding those passes through to Vardy and whoever joins him up front.
Those passes might need to be even more accurate than normal this time. Bournemouth CB Nathan Aké leads the league in interceptions, with defensive midfielder Philip Billing just one behind him.
James Maddison with the assist of the season. Is there anything this man can’t do? #LCFC | #PremierLeague— Footy Feels (@FootyFeels) August 25, 2019
Maddison at his best is certainly capable of threading the needle through them, but that’s not quite what we’ve seen so far (other than the beautiful assist above). We certainly haven’t seen it from Youri Tielemans, possibly because of the lack of width we’ve shown so far.
If those two can start combining more effectively, and certainly if they can start playing the forwards in more often, the game will shift firmly in the Foxes’ favour.
3. Keep the width
Brendan Rodgers changed things up from his early league formations against Newcastle, bringing in Harvey Barnes to play on the left, with Ayoze Perez sticking tighter to the right.
Honestly, it didn’t really pay off. Barnes struggled to make much of an impact against the Magpies’ back 3/5, and Perez just had a poor game, spurning several good chances without creating any others.
Ayoze Perez (6.4) vs Newcastle yesterday:— FPLSwede (@FPL_Swe) August 29, 2019
• Playing as a right midfielder
• 0 shots on target
• 0 key passes or big chances created
• Played 97 minutes
With a heatmap looking like this aswell I am fairly confident that he will be gone from my #FPL team... pic.twitter.com/jrPcSHF4nq
With the positive glimpses we’ve seen from them so far, I think both should be given another chance to make it work in this wider formation. Even if he choses to replace one or both, with Marc Albrighton hardly featuring this year Rodgers should stick with the attempt to create more width.
Hopefully Ben Chilwell will be fit to return. As well as Fuchs has done in his stead, I’d be bringing the England LB straight into the lineup to get forward and make those runs he does. We haven’t seen him and Barnes on the pitch together yet, but it was real highlight last year.