Monthly Archives: November 2010

King Fells Forest

Leicester City 1:0 Nottingham Forest

City defeated neighbours Nottingham Forest on a wintry Monday night in front of the SKY cameras, with Andy King clinching the three points with a second half goal…

Sven Goran Eriksson made one change for this last game of the Milan Mandaric era, with new loan signing Roman Bednar in for Steve Howard up front.
Bednar immediately gave City some added presence up front, though both sides were struggling to create anything worthwhile in a scrappy opening phase of the game. 
The first chance fell to Adebola but his effort was wayward.
At the other end Gallagher took a free-kick from a similar position to his spectacular goal in last season’s encounter, but this one disappointingly went straight into the wall.
In the 25th minute another free-kick frpom Cunningham led to a scramble in the penalty area, Bednar very unlucky not to open his account for City when a fierce half volley struck a defender’s leg when goalbound.
Forest were struggling to deal with Bednar at this stage, but yet another free-kick was mis-hit by Gallagher.
Earnshaw replaced Adebola on 36 minutes and was soon looking to add to his tally of goals against City, but Weale narrowed his angle well and blocked a shot from close in on the right. 
City should have gone in at half time with the lead but Vassell saw his effort rescued on the goal line and Gallagher fired a shot from the left inches wide.   
City’s dominance grew in the second half as City attacked the Kop end. The busy Abe fired a shot over; Wellens forced Camp into a save; and then there was uproar when Vassell was wrestled over in the area and the ref waved play on.
But City were not to be denied. In the 59th minute Bednar fed the ball to Vassell in the area and he emerged from a crowd of four red shirts with the ball which he fired across goal to find King, in the right place at the right time as ever, for a simple tap in at the far post. 
It was no more than City deserved and they should have doubled that lead two minutes later when a great move involving Vassell ended with Gallagher sending a low shot just wide of the right hand post.
King then beat two players with a run which ended with him curling a shot just wide of the target, before Dyer replaced Vassell to warm applause.
Weale then saved from Tyson and Davies sent a long range effort over the bar as the snow began to fall.
Bednar was given a big ovation as he trooped off to be replaced by Howard with ten minutes remaining.
Wellens and King combined well to set up Howard but he was denied by an incredible save from Camp who tipped a close range shot over the bar.
Three minutes of time added on passed without drama, and in truth Forest’s most threatening second half moment had been a penalty shout when Earnshaw had gone full length but failed to impress the ref.
It was fantastic night for those who had ventured from their fireplaces and the victory saw City take a healthy leap up the table to 14th place. 
Sven was pleased with the performance: “We were much better in the second half and were much more dangerous. We played more direct. We started the second half very well and scored one goal and should have had one more. I think we thoroughly deserved to win.”

Leicester: Weale, Davies, Hobbs, Naughton, King, Abe, Wellens, Cunningham, Gallagher (Waghorn 89), Vassell (Dyer 72), Bednar (Howard 80). Subs Not Used: Logan, Fryatt, Oakley, Morrison.
Forest: Camp, Morgan, Chambers, Gunter, Bertrand, Cohen (Ramsey 61), Anderson, McGugan (Tyson 68), Moussi, Adebola (Earnshaw 36), McCleary. Subs Not Used: Smith, Tudgay, Wilson, Majewski.

Referee: M Oliver (Northumberland). Attendance: 24,659.

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Mandaric Era Ends on Monday

Reports from Sheffield are claiming that Milan Mandaric has agreed an £8M deal to buy Sheffield Wednesday.

Although a contract has been signed the takeover must be rubber-stamped by the club’s shareholders at an extraordinary general meeting, but no obstacles are foreseen.
A club spokesman for Wednesday issued a statement that will sound familiar to Leicester City fans: “Milan has had to put his hand in his pockets. He’s had tremendous feedback from Wednesday fans since becoming involved and that made him more determined to do the deal.”
Mandaric has agreed a £7M settlement with the Co-operative Bank, who were owed £23M.
If all proceeds as planned Monday night’s derby against Nottingham Forest at the Walkers Stadium will be the 72 year old Serb’s last as City chairman. 
Although financially better off City are in more or less the league position where Manadaric found us four years ago; and a scattergun approach to managerial appointments led to the club being relegated to the third tier for the first time in our history.  
Even when Mandaric eventually stumbled upon the right man, in the form of Nigel Pearson, his relationship with him deteriotated until Pearson was effectively forced out of the club despite reaching the play-offs.
The abiding memory of the man will be that of his double-talk: one day insisting that Paulo Sousa must be given more time and the next day sacking him first thing in the morning. And just recently he claimed that he was in no way involved in talks with Sheffield Wednesday…

Good luck Wednesday… you’ll need it.

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Something Borrowed, Something Blue…

Sven Goran Eriksson has been busy in the days leading up to the loan transfer deadline…

City today announced the loan signing of Wigan keeper Chris Kirkland in a deal that will last until January.
Barwell-born Kirkland, who broke the transfer record for a keeper when he moved from Coventry to Liverpool for £6M, has recently lost his first team place at the DW Stadium, though Wigan claim that they don’t wish him to move permanently.
The 29 year old, who has one full England cap, will be available for the visit of Forest on Monday.
He will join City’s growing band of borrowed players, West Brom’s Czech striker Roman Bednar arriving last Wednesday.
The 27 year old has also signed a deal until January. 

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To subscribe to The FOX for the 2010-11 season, get your Summer Special in the post right away, and claim your free limited edition print send a cheque for £14.00 to:

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Robin Robbery

Bristol City 2:0 Leicester City

City had a fruitless trip to Ashton Gate but Sven Goran Eriksson must be wondering how his side failed to take something from a game that they dominated for long periods but couldn’t turn that possession in to goals.

City were unchanged from the side that saw off Derby seven days earlier with Oakley returning to the bench after an injury lay-off. It was City who dominated the first half from the first kick with neat possession football and long spells in the Bristol half. 
King had City’s first worthwhile effort after ten minutes when James was alert to gather his shot following a corner. City’s best chance, however, came after twenty minutes when James needlessly floored King as he broke through but was running away from goal. It was a clear penalty but Howard’s straight, driven kick was stopped by James’s legs as he dived to the right. This gave the home side a lift, who up until that point had been under the cosh and feeling the heat from their own fans.
It was City who continued to make the best chances though with Gallagher having the best of those with a header that drifted just wide with James beaten for once. Not until seven minutes before half time did Bristol finally manage a shot on goal when Stead fired wide when well placed. There was an uneasy feeling amongst the 1,700 or so City faithful at half time; so much possession but nothing to show for it.
The second half started in the same vein with City opening up the Bristol defence again and again, Gallagher again coming close with a fierce shot and King a real handful for the beleaguered Bristol back line who were also struggling to cope with the aerial threat of Howard who once again led the line superbly. But, incredibly, it was the Robins that broke the deadlock just before the hour when a free kick close to the corner flag was pulled back for a woefully unmarked Pitman to side-foot the ball home with Wellens just failing to prevent the ball from crossing the line. This seemed to be the cue for City’s game to come apart and Bristol grew stronger and more confident as City became more frustrated.
City continued to create corners and chances but Howard was denied by James twice in close succession and the former England ‘keeper was having a magnificent afternoon.
Sven made changes in an attempt to turn things around but to no avail: Dyer for Vassell, Oakley for King (who worryingly pulled up with a hamstring problem) and then Fryatt for Howard who (along with every City fan behind the goal) was astonished to see his number on the board and made it clear that he was not best pleased.
City’s best chances from then on fell to Cunningham who had a clear sight of goal but fired over, and then Waghorn snatched at a gilt-edged chance inside the area but blazed over when it looked easier to hit the target.
Bristol now looked capable of holding on to their lead and they even managed to double it during stoppage time when Chris Weale threw the ball out wide, aiming for Gallagher, and found the feet of Clarkson who lifted the ball back over the back-pedalling Weale and in to the unguarded net. It was a farcical end to the game and City fans headed for the exit wondering how they lost a game that they controlled for most of the afternoon.
It is hard to single out poor performances because the side ticked over beautifully and kept the ball with some lovely passing football but failed to take their chances and conceded two soft goals at the other end. City urgently need a cutting edge and a spark in the final third that will reward the excellent build-up play and until they do then we will experience a few more frustrating games like this one.

Bristol: James, Fontaine, McAllister, Ribeiro, Caulker, Elliott, Skuse, Johnson (Pitman 46), Rose, Adomah (Cisse 86), Stead (Clarkson 65). Subs Not Used: Campbell-Ryce, Gerken, Stewart, Haynes.
Leicester: Weale, Davies, Hobbs, Naughton, King (Waghorn 71), Abe, Wellens, Cunningham, Gallagher, Vassell (Dyer 62), Howard (Fryatt 80). Subs Not Used: Berner, Logan, Oakley, Morrison.

 Referee: C Pawson (West Yorkshire). Attendance: 14,517.

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City See Off Rams in Style

Leicester City 2:0 Derby County

City delighted a big crowd with a stylish performance earning a 2-0 win against neighbours Derby at Filbert Way on Saturday…

Sven Goran Eriksson made one change to his side with Howard starting instead of Waghorn. It would have been two changes but Vitor injured himself in the warm-up and Hobbs retained his place.
The afternoon didn’t get off to a great start, with the Remembrance Day minutes silence wrecked by people too stupid to see the irony of screaming at someone to be quiet.  
City started brightly against the in-form Rams and had the ball in the net after six minutes but Vassell’s celebration were cut short by the linesman’s flag.
Davies and King both went close as City piled on the early pressure, before taking the lead in the 13th minute.  
Wellens, who had perhaps his best game in a City shirt to date, sent King through with a defence splitting pass and the youngster produced a cool finish to beat Fielding.
City continued to dominate, King almost put a finishing touch to a Cunningham cross and Gallagher sent a long range effort whistling over the bar.
In a rare Derby attack Commons sent a long range effort a yard wide of the right hand post, and Hobbs managed to clear a dangerous Cywka cross. Moore then sent a shot over when well placed on the left, but City took their 1-0 lead in with them at the break.
City continued in the same vein in the second half with Vassell and the overlapping Naughton proving to be a handful, but no one could get a head to their crosses.
Green went close with a header for the Rams and then Dyer, on for Vassell in th e64th minute, beat two defenders in the area before sending his low shot too close to Fielding.
With twenty minutes remaining City had the chance to ease the nerves when Naughton burst into the area and was clumsily tripped by Commons.  Howard made no mistake from the spot for the second time in four days, blasting a nerveless effort to Fielding’s right.
That was game over, with Derby heads going down and the only question mark was whether City could add a third to underline their superiority. Gallagher went close a couple of times but the home crowd were more than happy with a convincing 2-0 victory against fourth placed Derby.   
Sven was delighted: “We deserved the win. We started very well, then in the last 15 minutes of the first half Derby came back well and created a lot of problems. We talked at half-time, came back and created many chances. I’m pleased because we beat a very good football team and we had to be 100% to beat them. I thought the players were fantastic today.”

Leicester: Weale, Davies, Hobbs, Naughton, King, Abe, Wellens, Cunningham, Gallagher, Vassell (Dyer 64), Howard (Waghorn 89). Subs Not Used: Berner, Logan, Fryatt, Moussa, Morrison.
Derby: Fielding, Leacock, Moxey, Brayford, Barker (Anderson 78), Cywka (Doyle 85), Bailey, Green, Pearson (Kuqi 69), Moore, Commons. Subs Not Used: Deeney, Savage, Bywater, Pringle.

Referee: Steve Tanner (Somerset). Attendance: 25,930.

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Mandaric Era Almost at an End?

Leicester Chairman and former owner Milan Mandaric is on the verge of taking over Sheffield Wednesday, according to reports today…

With the Owls facing a winding-up order over an unpaid tax bill of £600,000 on Wednesday, the club’s main creditor, the Cooperative Bank, will attempt to elect a new buyer on Tuesday.

According to Sheffield sources there are three bids in contention and Mandaric’s proposal is the favourite…

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City Scrape a Point Against Blades

Leicester City 2:2 Sheffield United

After a strong opening twenty minutes City somehow ended up relying on a 92nd minute Howard penalty to rescue a point against Sheffield United at Filbert Way on Wednesday night…

City, with one change to the side – Hobbs in for the injured Vitor – could hardly have got off to a brighter start against a struggling Sheffield United side. The lively Waghorn almost gave City a 2nd minute lead with a fierce near post shot that Simonsen just managed to block. 
City then took an 8th minute lead, when Waghorn was fouled on th eedg eof th earea by Bartley. Gallagher stepped up to deliver a perfect curling free-kick into the top left hand corner, giving Simonsen no chance.
King then had two half chances to extend City’s lead, with a Naughton through ball having a little too much weight on it, and a header glanced wide.
As it was, the Blades somehow managed to shake themselves out of an abject performance to take an unlikely lead in at the break. 
In the 29th minute City’s back line were caught out on the break and Reid squared for an unmarked Yeates, the former City man equalising with a simple finish.
This seems to knock City’s confidence and they looked shaky as United took the lead four minutes before the break.  
Yeates struck again from a free-kick, with a similar effort to Gallagher’s, and as the small band of visitors celebrated there was a rising sense of frustration among the home crowd.
The second half continued in much the same vein with City, being bullied all over the park and unable to get a grip on proceedings. Ten minutes into the half, with no sign of improvement Eriksson brought Dyer and Howard on for Waghorn and Vassell.  
Although Dyer was sporadically effective, United were still in charge and cynical fouls and time-wasting kept them on top. At one stage Reid was substituted and managed to do a jog that was slower than a walk.
Gallagher almost found the bottom right hand corner from a free-kick but Simonsen produced a fine save.
King went close and Howard couldn’t convert a cross that fell for him six yards out.
As the game entered four minutes of time-added-on it looked as though United would claim the three points but Yeates, their two-goal hero, provided a twist in the tale handling the ball in the penalty area.
Howard stepped forward to convert a confident spot-kick and rescue a point from a poor performance that had promised much.
Sven Goran Eriksson observed: “I think we were a little lucky but we showed a lot of character to chase the equaliser at the end. It was a strange game because we played good football and scored a good goal in the first 20 minutes. Everything looked like a nice evening, almost easy, but it is never easy in this division.”

Leicester: Weale, Davies, Hobbs, Naughton, King, Abe (Fryatt 74), Wellens, Cunningham, Gallagher, Vassell (Dyer 55), Waghorn (Howard 55). Subs Not Used: Berner, Logan, Moussa, Morrison.
United: Simonsen, Jordan, Nosworthy, Bartley, Lowton, Yeates, Britton, Quinn, Montgomery, Reid (Ertl 79), Cresswell (Bogdanovic 86). Subs Not Used: Wright, Kozluk, Calve, Taylor, Evans.

Referee: P Gibbs (West Midlands). Attendance: 20,445.


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