Leicester City shook off Huddersfield Town by a score of 4-1 at the King Power, closing out the festive period in style. Tom Cannon gave the Foxes a 1-0 lead at the break with his first Leicester goal. The second half saw Ricardo double the lead and then Cannon added a third before Michal Helik got one back for the Terriers. A Stephy Mavididi free-kick restored the three-goal cushion for City.
This truly was a game of two halves: Boring and fun. The first half featured some of the most lethargic football we’ve seen in some time. The Foxes outshot the visitors by a 4-2 margin, but it took a moment of magic from Cannon to break the deadlock. Starting the second half was like going from Stormblood to Shadowbringers: It was end-to-end action from the restart. I’m not sure what Maresca said to his charges at the break, but I hope he wrote it down so he can say it again.
Tom Cannon has to be Man of the Match. Both of his goals were superbly taken and he was a menace in a way we haven’t seen from any Leicester striker this season. Winks had to carry a heavier load today with Yunus and Casadei in front of him, although both #8s seemed to grow into the game. Both fullbacks were everywhere, or at least, in the right place every time. I’ve become a believer in Justin’s defensive abilities and, when deployed on the right, his crossing is a weapon. It was Hermansen, oddly enough, who really caught my eye today. He made three top-class saves and was alert to the danger any time Huddersfield got forward.
The victory gives the Foxes 65 points from 26 matches. With both Ipswich and Southampton dropping points today, our margin over our competitors is now 10 and 15 points respectively. We travel to Millwall to face the Lions in the FA Cup next Saturday. The following week, we take on Coventry at the (checks notes) Coventry Building Society Arena. I miss Highfield Road.
Leicester City: Mads Hermansen, Ricardo Pereira (C), Wout Faes, Jannik Vestergaard, James Justin, Cesare Casadei, Harry Winks, Yunus Akgun, Abdul Fatawu, Stephy Mavididi, Tom Cannon
Huddersfield Town: Lee Nicholls, Michal Helik, Yuta Nakayama, Tom Lees, Jack Rudoni, David Kasumu, Ben Wiles, Jaheim Headley, Rarmani Edmonds-Green, Josh Koroma, Sorba Thomas
Key Moments and Notes
1’- Justin’s starting on the right tonight with Ricardo on the left. They’re swapping sides but not roles as it’s City’s captain who is slotting into midfield when the Foxes have the ball.
8’- Speaking of the match day squad, we might as well as there’s not much happening on the pitch, there’s no Iheanacho, Daka, Ndidi, or Souttar today. Word out of Ghana is that Fatawu has passed up a chance to join the senior squad to cement his place with the Foxes.
15’- It’s laboured out there today. With Yunus and Casadei as the #8s, the movement isn’t quite up to the standards we’ve come to expect. It just goes to show how much space KDH and Wilf create for the wide men when they’re on the pitch.
28’- I feel compelled to write something but I’m not sure what I’m meant to be writing about.
40’- GOAL! There’s nothing going on at all. Then out of nowhere, Ricardo flicks it to Tom Cannon with the outside of his boot. Cannon blasts it first time and tucks it inside the near post from quite a distance. Fantastic shot.
45’- The Foxes have been the better side, with an absurd 71% of the ball and 4 shots to the Terriers 1. That said, we’ve been better, but we’ve not been dominant by any stretch of the imagination.
HALF TIME: Leicester City 1 - 0 Huddersfield Town
46’- No changes at the half, at least in terms of personnel. The pace is quite a bit quicker.
48’- GOAL! The Foxes start the second half brightly and get an early reward. Justin crosses to the back post and there are THREE Leicester players lined up to nod it in. It’s Ricardo who outjumps Casadei and Mavididi and gets the goal.
53’- Close! Faes is almost in the Huddersfield area when he finds Yunus with an incisive pass. The Turkey man tries to replicate Cannon’s turn-and-shoot move and doesn’t get the same contact as his teammate. In fairness, that’s quite a high bar to clear.
54’- Close! A cross from Mavididi makes its way to Fatawu on the opposite side of the box. He’s in space so you know what’s coming: He curls it towards the far post, but it’s deflected just wide. Cannon tucks the ensuing corner into the net after a pass from Justin, but he’s inches offside.
59’- Close! It’s opening up now. The Terriers make a rare foray into the Leicester half. Thomas’ cross finds Rudoni’s run, but he plants his header wide.
61’- GOAL! Game over. Vestergaard spots Cannon’s run between the centre-halfs with a lofted ball over the top. The striker out-muscles Lees for the bouncing ball and he’s in. He calmly slots past Nicholls like it’s no big deal.
Leicester City – Huddersfield— Qureshi Just That (@QJTXSJT10) January 1, 2024
Goal EFL Championship
Thomas Cannon pic.twitter.com/jxl2kiYuTk
62’- GOAL! Hermansen makes a fine save to keep Koroma’s drive out of the net. From the ensuing corner, the Foxes fail to clear their lines and Helik pokes it home from close range. He’s now Huddersfield’s top scorer with 7 goals this year.
72’- Cannon sure gives Vardy vibes, doesn’t he? He’s sitting on the shoulder of the last man like a sprinter waiting for the starter’s gun. If this match is any indication, and small samples always are, we’ve got ourselves a player.
77’- GOAL! Mavididi wins a free kick from exactly the sort of area where he likes to shoot. He takes it himself and..why is there only a 3-man wall? He sees a gap and just rolls it inside the near post.
79’- Close! Fatawu floats a cross to the far post and Ricardo is all alone to meet it. He tries to go across the keeper, which he does, and put it inside the far post, which he does not.
81’- Maresca makes a couple of changes, sending Marc Albrighton and Callum Doyle for Fatawu and Justin. Nice to see Doyle back on the pitch after his long layoff. Always nice to see Sharky as well.
87’- Close! Ricardo should have a hat trick and yes I know how mad that sounds. Albrighton breaks down the right and then puts it on a plate for the captain. He’s all alone, 10 yards out, and he skies over when hitting the target would have been easier.
88’- Wanya Marcal comes on for Mavididi. The academy man has looked good in his limited action this year.
89’- Close! Rudoni gets behind the defence, but Hermansen makes a smart save. He’s been excellent today as the Terriers have had more good chances than the scoreline suggests.
90+5’- The Foxes see out injury team and coast to victory.
FULL TIME: Leicester City 4 - 1 Huddersfield Town
Are we not doing “phrasing” anymore?