Leicester City 1:0 Preston North End
Sven Goran Eriksson registered his first home win as City boss, with 1-0 victory over Preston North End at Filbert Way on Saturday…
Eriksson made seven changes to his defeated League Cup side, with King wearing the captain’s armband in Oakley’s absence, against a side who had won their last five games at the Walkers Stadium.
The visitors had a chance within a minute of the kick off but Treacy shot wide when he had time and space to do better.
But after that it was all City. Naughton and King supplied some fine crosses from the right, but no one could apply a finishing touch. Gallagher brought a fine save from Lonergan with a great effort, Wellens had a shot blocked and Waghorn and Fryatt both wasted chances when well placed. A series of well delivered corners from Waghorn troubled the keeper, but City just don’t appear to have anyone who can score from a flag kick.
The breakthrough finally came in the 36th minute. Abe, looking more like a World Cup player as he settles in, found Gallagher in space and he had time to drill a low shot into the bottom right hand corner.
The Birch presided over a half time trip down memory lane introducing a number of City legends from down the decades drawing warm applause from a crowd brought up on better times.
City, attacking the Family Stand end in the second half, could not add to the scoreline despite being in control of the game for the vast majority of the time. Cunningham, Naughton and Gallagher went close, but things weren’t really working up front and didn’t improve when Howard and N’Guessan came on for Fryatt and Waghorn.
Apart from one nervous moment in time added on Preston had hardly threatened on a ground that had produced plenty of points for them, and City deservedly took the three points. The defence had looked sound with Vitor having his best game in a City shirt to date.
Sven singled out two of his players for praise: “I had wondered for a long time when we would get a clean sheet and we had it today, I am very happy. Paul Gallagher is an important player and a good player for us. He scored with his left foot today. It was a good goal. He took it very well. Yuki Abe is getting better and better. Maybe outside right is not his best position, maybe he is better central, but he adapts and does what you ask him to do. I think he was brilliant today. He is a good footballer, no doubt about it. He has a lot of energy and he is very willing to learn and his English is getting better and better. I am very happy with him.”
Leicester: Weale, Hobbs, Vitor, Naughton, King, Abe, Wellens, Cunningham, Gallagher (Oakley 89), Fryatt (Howard 62), Waghorn (N’Guessan 70). Subs Not Used: Berner, Logan, Moussa, Morrison.
Preston: Lonergan, Brown, Jones, Davidson (Gray 82), St Ledger, Russell (Parry 70), Treacy, Coutts, Barton (Mayor 84), James, Hume. Subs Not Used: Morgan, Arestidou, McLaughlin, Proctor.
Referee: G Ward (Surrey). Attendance: 21,212 .