Monthly Archives: February 2016

Ulloa raises the roof with late winner for Leicester

Leicester City 1:0 Norwich City

2015-16 norwich home a

City struggled to break down a Norwich side fighting for their Premier League lives, but they got there in the end with an 89th minute Ulloa goal…

Claudio Ranieri was forced into making one change to his side with Amartey making his debut at right-back, replacing the suspended Simpson.

The Norwich game plan soon unfolded, they were defensive minded and also determined to impose themselves physically with some early heavy challenges which twice left Albrighton on the turf. But they did also look keen to break forward when it was on. They were first to threaten when Schmeichel had to be alert to beat Jerome to a Redmond through-ball.
At the other end City were struggling to turn possession into chances with crosses being dealt with by the Canaries’ aerial supremacy.
A Huth header over the bar was the nearest they got in the early stages.
Vardy then got in down the right and pulled the ball back for Okazaki, but his back-heeled effort was blocked by Bennett.
As City continued to press Mahrez sent Albrighton in down the right and his hard, low cross was blocked at the near post by Martin, trickling 6 inches wide of goal. The Algerian international then ghosted past two defenders before having a shot blocked, before Albrighton’s follow up effort was also charged down by the yellow and green wall.

Leicester City v Norwich City, FA Premier League, 27 February 2016

Naismith was then denied by a superb Morgan tackle, before play swept back up-field and City gained a free-kick out on the left when Okazaki was bundled over. Albrighton’s swinging effort eluded Huth’s head and went narrowly wide of the far post.
The visitors, with just one point from their last six games, should have taken a priceless lead as they ended the half with a good spell. Jerome did everything right leaping above City’s defence to meet a Brady corner from the right at the near post, but his glancing header didn’t have quite enough on it and it flashed across goal.
Schmeichel then blocked a well-struck Redmond effort in the last action of the half.

City had the first chance of the second half when Mahrez was tripped on the edge of the area. Drinkwater set up Vardy with the free-kick, but his low shot was too centrally placed and thumped into the chest of Ruddy.
In what was now a very tight game neither goalkeeper was seeing much action. Ruddy made another save from Albrighton, but the whole stadium seemed to be acutely aware that the minutes were ticking down.
With just over twenty minutes remaining Ranieri made a couple of changes. The slightly limping Kanté was replaced by King, while Okazaki made way for Schlupp, making his first appearance since December.
Although that gave City some fresh impetus down the left, Norwich stood firm and it looked as though the game was drifting towards a 0-0 draw.
Redmond sent one effort narrowly wide for the Canaries late on, but it was City who would be able to summon up that something extra in the 89th minute.

2015-16 norwich home d

Mahrez fed Albrighton down the right, and the winger delivered a hard, low ball. Vardy, at full stretch, could only get a toe to it, but that touch diverted it away from the defender and into the path of substitute Ulloa, who slid in for a glorious and vital winner.
A huge roar of relief greeted Ulloa’s goal, but City still had to get through 4 minutes of time added on, which were mercifully drama-free. The place was absolutely buzzing at the final whistle.
A delighted Claudio Ranieri commented: “The conclusion I have drawn from this is that my players believe until the end. That, for me, is very important. If the other teams start to win, they can win all the matches. But for us, the next match is always the final match. That is our mentality.”
Ulloa’s priceless goal meant City went five points clear at the top of the Premier League, while Norwich were left with nothing for a huge effort. Like City last year, if they could produce more performances of this intensity, they should be able to survive.
For Leicester the incredible dream continues…

Leicester: Schmeichel, Amartey (Ulloa 78), Morgan, Huth, Fuchs, Drinkwater, Kanté (King 69), Albrighton, Mahrez, Okazaki (Schlupp 69), Vardy. Subs Not Used: Schwarzer, Wasilewski, Gray, Dyer.
Norwich: Ruddy, Martin, Naismith (Jarvis 82), Howson, Jerome (Bamford 90), Brady, Klose (Mbokani 90), Redmond, Bennett, Pinto, Tettey. Subs Not Used: Rudd, Mulumbu, Olsson, O’Neil.

Referee: Neil Swarbrick. Attendance: 32,114.

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To make sure you get every copy of this magnificent season (stocks are running low)…

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Rest of the World outside Europe £33 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

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Last minute agony for Leicester at the Emirates

Arsenal 2:1 Leicester City

2015-16 arsenal away a

Ten-man City came within seconds of earning a point at the Emirates on Sunday…

Claudio Ranieri was able to name an unchanged side for the the fifth game running, for this top of the table clash at Arsenal on Sunday.
There was an early spell of pressure for the Gunners which ended with Sanchez sending the ball narrowly wide from an Oxlade-Chamberlain corner.
City, chiefly though the work of the fantastic Kanté, then got a grip of proceedings. The quarter hour mark saw chances at both ends. Ramsey looked favourite to reach a through ball before Schmeichel came haring out of his goal, like a purple streak, to win the race and clear. City pressed forward and Albrighton chipped into the area where Vardy beat Koscielny in the air, but Cech got down smartly to save his downward header on the line.
Play continued to move from end to end  – Giroud had a shot blocked by Morgan, and then  Kanté delivered a curling shot that was clawed away by Cech.
Morgan, perhaps having one of his finest games in a Leicester shirt, then blocked a Sanchez effort, before Giroud headed narrowly over from a corner.
Giroud’s next header found the net, but the linesman’s flag for offside curtailed the home fans’ celebrations.

2015-16 arsenal away b

A minute before the break City delighted their followers taking the lead from the penalty spot. With the Arsenal fans appealing for a foul by Morgan on Ozil (something they had done for most of the half), City broke swiftly forward. Referee Atkinson waved play on after Kanté was floored and then Vardy burst into the penalty area where Monreal blocked his progress. The ref pointed to the spot and Vardy rattled the spot-kick home, sending Cech the wrong way.

The second half began in the same high-octane fashion as the first, and a key moment soon arrived. Simpson was booked for no more than a failure to get out of Sanchez’s way. The Chilean waved an imaginary yellow card and the ref obliged.
Mahrez then went over in the box after being clipped by Monreal’s knee, but play was waved on.
The moment that would change the game arrived in the 54th minute. In an Arsenal attack down the right, Simpson pulled Giroud back by the arm. It was more of a yellow card than the first, and City were down to ten men.
Ranieri reorganised, bringing Wasilewski on for Mahrez, but not before the departing Algerian international was violently shoved with both hands by Coquelin. The referee took no action, though it was worse than either of Simpson’s offences.
Under increasing pressure City held out until the 70th minute. A Bellerin cross was nodded down by Giroud for substitute Walcott, who nipped in sharply to beat Schimeichel and level the game.
City’s ten men put in a Titanic effort in the closing stages, as chances for Ramsey, Sanchez, Giroud, Mertesacker and Welbeck came and went. It was unrelenting pressure with only one more chance on the break for City, which Vardy fired straight at Cech.
As City saw out the four minutes of time added on, Schmeichel continuing to defy Arsenal’s string of chances, it looked as though they had earned a vital point.
But then Wasilewski committed a needless foul 30 yards out. Ozil delivered a precise free-kick into the danger area and substitute Welbeck, sent a glancing header beyond Schmeichel’s reach to give Arsenal the victory with seconds to go.
It was a cruel way to go down, and Arsenal’s gamesmanship may have left a sour taste in the mouth, but City remained in top spot and could only learn from this experience.

Claudio Ranieri was not impressed: “I am very angry. An international referee gives two yellow cards for normal fouls and the match was full of fouls. In the second half maybe it was because the crowd pushed the referee a lot and put him under pressure. You make one yellow card and you have to stay calm – my players, but also the referee. The draw should have been the real result. There was four minutes extra time signalled and it was five minutes extra time when they scored. But it’s okay. It doesn’t matter. We continue to fight. I am very proud of my players. They put on a fantastic performance.”

Arsenal: Cech, Bellerin, Koscielny (Chambers 46), Mertesacker, Monreal, Coquelin (Walcott 61), Ramsey, Ozil, Oxlade-Chamberlain (Welbeck 83), Sanchez, Giroud. Subs Not Used: Ospina, Flamini, Elneny, Campbell.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan, Huth, Fuchs, Drinkwater, Kanté, Albrighton (King 82), Mahrez (Wasilewski 58), Okazaki (Gray 61), Vardy. Subs Not Used: Schwarzer, Chilwell, Dyer, Ulloa.

Referee: M Atkinson. Attendance: 60,009.

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To get a copy of FOX 197 posted out to you click HERE.

To make sure you get every copy of this magnificent season (stocks are running low)…

UK subscriptions click HERE.

A subscription for the 2015-16 season outside the UK costs:

Europe £27 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

Rest of the World outside Europe £33 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

The Fox is also on sale in the following shops:
LEICESTER: Churchgate News, Churchgate; Centre News, Humberstone Gate; Mercury News, Cardinals Walk; Mercury News, Downing Drive.
LEICS: Forbouys, Blaby; Mercers, Wigston; Mercury News, Cosby; Huncote News; Mercury News, Narborough; Roger Simms, Lutterworth; Mercury News, St Marys Place, Market Harborough; Mercury News, Kibworth; Mercury News, London Road, Oadby; Oadby News, The Parade, Oadby; Mace Express, Syston; Peberdys, Syston; Forbouys, Birstall; Mercury News, Rothley; Carillon News, Loughborough; Mercury News, Sherrard Street, Melton Mowbray.

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FOX 197 – The Leicester City fanzine – in the shops now.

The FOX 197 – the February edition – is in the shops now…

Our third all-colour issue is now in the shops, or you can buy it online.

cover low res

Featuring: our latest Fox Gallery caricature – N’Golo Kante; an interview with Alan Bennett – the club secretary from 1979 to 1994 takes us behind the scenes at Filbert Street; Fully Programmed from Christmas 1994; Fox Diary – the Premier League adventure continues; the latest from the Foxes Trust; What’s happening on #lcfc Twitter, mostly starring Christian Fuchs; Rewind goes back to April 2015; Foxed in the Head – on pies, love and Revolver bags; former Chairman Andrew Taylor is our guest columnist; John Hutchinson continues his series on City and World War II; our new series The History of Leicester City in 100 Objects continues; your letters and Bentley’s Roof; Parting Shots our favourite photos of the last month; and the latest doings of Fanatical Frank…

all for considerably less than a pint…

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Extract from the Alan Bennett Interview…

ab title

FOX: How did you go about deciding on ticket prices? Did you compare with what the rest of the division was charging?

AB: To a large extent. You were always torn between making as much revenue as you could to keep the club going and maybe even get a transfer kitty going, because the TV money wasn’t flying around in those days – and putting prices beyond what people could afford, or wanted to pay. I think we probably got ours about right, near that happy medium.

FOX: We have a vision of matchdays where the turnstiles are closed about ten past three and huge bags of money are taken into a room where someone spends the rest of the game counting it out. Is that about right?

AB: Well, nearly. You’d keep a stile open in each stand for the late comers up to half-time. Most of the turnstiles took cash. Each one had a meter which would be read by the turnstile supervisor before they opened so they knew what the starting number was. You were only allowed one price for each turnstile, which could cause some confusion with families trying to get in together. The turnstile reader would then take a closing number. Say, to keep it easy, 500 people had gone in and paid a pound we needed £500 from the turnstile operator. Now, the turnstile operator doesn’t know his starting and closing numbers, he just counts it, bags it and hands it in to the cash office in the Main Stand. We know he should have £500 so when we count it and it is £497 then we say, ‘Okay, thanks!’
If someone comes in with £450 then he gets sent away to count it again. I mean, sometime sthey came in with £505, errors can happen. With 40 stiles, 37 or 38 of them were near enough. The other two or three, 9 times out of 10 they’d come back with the right money. Nearly always they were honest mistakes, if the same chap did it a few times then you got a bit suspicious.
By about half-time everything would be bagged up along with the programme money and, it used to be a taxi but ended up with Securicor, it would be sent off to the bank which would be opened up specially. By the end of the game it would be safe in the bank. They’d count it on Monday morning and send us a statement, which we had to accept, but usually it would be within ten quid, which wasn’t bad for tens of thousands.

FOX: Was there any reason it changed from a taxi to securiocor!?

AB: Erm.. it got a bit dicey once, I think!
Chelsea also used a taxi, even if was a 60,000 crowd. The only difference at Chelsea was we had a couple of bank clerks who would watch the first half. Then we would use one of two branches in London and only the clerks knew which one we were going to use on any given afternoon.

FOX: So the official attendance was based on the meter figures?

AB: Yes. These days I think they base the attendances on tickets sold, but back then it was the actual number in the ground. Apart from anyone who had jumped over. There wasn’t much we could do about that.

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To get a copy of FOX 197 posted out to you click HERE.

To make sure you get every copy of this magnificent season (stocks are running low)…

UK subscriptions click HERE.

A subscription for the 2015-16 season outside the UK costs:

Europe £27 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

Rest of the World outside Europe £33 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

The Fox is also on sale in the following shops:
LEICESTER: Churchgate News, Churchgate; Centre News, Humberstone Gate; Mercury News, Cardinals Walk; Mercury News, Downing Drive.
LEICS: Forbouys, Blaby; Mercers, Wigston; Mercury News, Cosby; Huncote News; Mercury News, Narborough; Roger Simms, Lutterworth; Mercury News, St Marys Place, Market Harborough; Mercury News, Kibworth; Mercury News, London Road, Oadby; Oadby News, The Parade, Oadby; Mace Express, Syston; Peberdys, Syston; Forbouys, Birstall; Mercury News, Rothley; Carillon News, Loughborough; Mercury News, Sherrard Street, Melton Mowbray.

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Leicester stun the Etihad with 3-1 victory

Manchester City 1:3 Leicester City

2015-16 man city away a

One of the biggest games in Leicester’s history saw them triumphant with a 3-1 win at the Etihad Stadium in this Saturday lunchtime table-topping clash…

Claudio Ranieri was able to name an unchanged side for this vital game and they got off to a flying start at a rainswept Etihad.
Although this was a record attendance at the Etihad many supporters were still absent due to traffic problems when Leicester took a 3rd minute lead.
After Hart had punched a threatening Albrighton cross clear, the ball was fed out to Mahrez on the right where he was bundled over by Kolarov.
Mahrez delivered the free-kick into the six yard box, where Huth had nipped ahead of Demicheli, getting a vital touch that deflected off the defender giving Hart no chance.
The already soaked Leicester players celebrated gleefully.
Five minutes later the visitors almost doubled their lead when a fantastic diagonal ball from Albrighton saw Vardy bearing down on goal. Hart was out smartly to block him and then Otamendi put in a timely challenge to deny Okazaki who was following up and shaping to shoot.
Hart was soon in action again, this time sliding out to meet Drinkwater who had been slipped in down the left by Mahrez.
City’s first chance came when Silva topped off a slick passing move with a low shot, that beat Schmiechel’s left hand post by a foot.
Leicester were happy to let City have the possession at this stage and one spell was ended with a superb crossfield Mahrez ball that picked out Vardy on the left. The England striker powered past Otamendi and delivered a low cross that saw Okazaki just crowded out at the near post.
Leicester had a scare when Fuchs and Zabaleta collided on the edge of the area, but referee Taylor awarded a free-kick. Kolarov’s fiercely delivered free-kick was bravely headed over by Huth when a mere mortal would have been tempted to duck.
Touré sent a shot well over after Sterling teed him up and Leicester took their precious lead down the tunnel at half-time.

2015-16 man city away b

Just as they had in the first half, Leicester scored three minutes after the restart.
City broke upfield with Kanté evading a couple of challenges. He passed to Mahrez, who rode an Otamendi tackle and then feinted round Demichelis before firing in a fantastic shot that left Hart standing.
He executed a forward roll before sharing the moment with three tiers of Leicester fans who were scarcely able to believe their own eyes.
City skipper Touré was then replaced by Fernando, who was soon in the action, forcing a superb point-blank reaction save from Schmeichel when he got his head to a corner kick.
On the hour the fantasy football continued as Leicester went 3-0 up. Fuchs’ corner from the left was met with a towering header from Huth and Hart was rooted to the spot again as it found the top left hand corner.
Vardy went clear on goal but Leicester were denied a fourth when Hart stood in his way and blocked the shot with his chest.
Agüero had a couple of efforts blocked as Leicester defended brilliantly, and they were only breached in the 88th minute when it was too late. Celina delivered a cross from the right and Agüero glanced a near post header across Schmeichel.
Hearts were in mouths moments later when a careless Simpson backpass put Agüero in on goal but we were spared a nerve-shredding finale when Schmeichel forced him wide and his shot sailed harmlessly over.
The final whistle confirmed a 3-1 victory in perhaps the most incredible game of an astonishing season. The table showed Leicester six points clear, as they continued to defy football logic, and one by one the numbers of people saying they ‘can’t’ win the league are being reduced.
Claudio Ranieri reacted to Leicester being made the bookmakers’ favourites for the title:
“I don’t believe the bookmakers. At the beginning of the season the bookmakers said, ‘sack Ranieri’. I hope one time they are right!”

Man City: Hart, Zabaleta, Otamendi, Demichelis, Kolarov, Touré (Fernando (52), Fernandinho, Silva (Celina 77), Delph (Iheanacho 52), Sterling, Agüero. Subs Not Used: Caballero, Clichy, Sagna, A. Garcia.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan, Huth, Fuchs, Kanté, Drinkwater, Albrighton (Dyer 86), Mahrez (Gray 77), Okazaki (Ulloa 81), Vardy. Subs Not Used: Schwarzer, Wasilewski, Chilwell, King.

Referee: A Taylor. Attendance: 54,693.

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It’s not too late to subscribe to The Fox for this fantastic 2015-16 season, you can pay online via Paypal:

UK subscriptions click HERE.

A subscription for the 2015-16 season outside the UK costs:

Europe £27 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

Rest of the World outside Europe £33 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

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Vardy Double Sees off Liverpool

Leicester City 2:0 Liverpool

2015-16 liverpool home b

Two goals from Jamie Vardy, one of them a contender for Goal of the Season, saw City beat Liverpool 2-0 at the KPS on Tuesday evening…

Claudio Ranieri named an unchanged line-up for the visit of Jürgen Klopp’s side as City once again set out to prove that they are genuine title contenders.
They had the first chance of the game after just two minutes when Mahrez drifted along the 18 yard line before sending in a low curling shot that beat the left hand post by a couple of feet.
Soon after that City threatened again when Vardy charged down the left and crossed for Okazaki, but his downward header from close in was too close to Mignolet who pulled off a fine save diverting the ball onto the crossbar.
At the other end Schmeichel came up with an equally good save from Henderson at point-blank range but the linesman’s flag was raised for offside.
With Kanté and Drinkwater both performing superbly in City’s engine room, the chances kept coming. Huth nodded over from a Fuchs’ corner and then a beautiful effort from Mahrez was heading for the top left hand corner when Mignolet clawed it away at full-stretch.
The teams went in goalless at the break in a finely balanced game where both sides looked dangerous on the break, with Liverpool finding some space on the flanks.

The visitors had the better start to the second half. Drinkwater blocked a Can effort and then Schmeichel was alert enough to parry a Moreno cross that suddenly threatened the goal. Firmino then fired in a shot that sailed into the Family Stand.

2015-16 liverpool home a

On the hour an unforgettable moment of magic broke the deadlock and lit up the evening.
Mahrez sent a fine ball down the right and Vardy let it bounce once before launching an outrageous half-volley over Mignolet and into the top right hand corner.
It had the crowd stunned and open-mouthed as he marched into the corner to soak up the acclaim.
Liverpool were rocked by this bolt from the blue and soon found themselves two goals down. After an incredible eleven-pass move involving Simpson, Vardy, Kanté, Drinkwater and Okazaki the Japanese international was brought down in the box.
Instead of complaining to referee Andre Marriner, City kept pressing and an Okazaki shot was deflected towards Vardy who nipped ahead of Lovren and lifted the ball over the advancing Mignolet to find the net for the 18th time this season.
There was no way back for the Reds and King, Gray and Ulloa were all introduced into the action in the remaining ten minutes as City saw the game out with another clean sheet.

City ended the evening three points clear at the top of the Premier League.
Claudio Ranieri was full of praise for the man about to sign a new contract at Leicester: “It was an unbelievable pass from Mahrez and unbelievable what Vardy did. He watched the ball arriving, watched the opponent and watched the keeper. He looked at the keeper out of the goal and hit it. It was unbelievable, amazing, fantastic. That goal opened the match.” 

Leicester: Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan, Huth, Fuchs, Drinkwater, Kanté, Mahrez (Ulloa 90), Albrighton (Gray 79), Okazaki (King 87), Vardy. Subs Not Used: Schwarzer, Dyer, Wasilewski, Chilwell.
Liverpool: Mignolet, Clyne, Lovren, Sakho, Moreno, Can (Allen 75), Henderson (Benteke 66), Lucas, Lallana, Milner, Firmino (Teixeira 87). Subs Not Used: Ward, Toure, Ibe, Flanagan.

Referee: A Marriner. Attendance: 32,121.

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It’s not too late to subscribe to The Fox for this fantastic 2015-16 season, you can pay online via Paypal:

UK subscriptions click HERE.

A subscription for the 2015-16 season outside the UK costs:

Europe £27 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

Rest of the World outside Europe £33 – click HERE to pay via Paypal.

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