Monthly Archives: March 2018

Chelsea edge Leicester out of the Cup in extra time

Leicester City 1:2 Chelsea aet

1718 chelsea home fac e

A Pedro header in extra-time settled a classic cup-tie in Chelsea’s favour at the KPS on Sunday evening…

Claude Puel made two changes to his side, with Iheanacho and Albrighton in for Okazaki and Gray, as City attempted to reach their first FA Cup semi-final since 1982.
The game moved from end to end almost from the start, and City went close in the 3rd minute. A low Simpson cross from the right found Albrighton, whose half-volley flew a yard wide of the right hand post.
City then looked exposed as Chelsea broke forward, but Willian over-hit his pass.
Morgan got his head to two corners, but the first deflected off Rudiger’s shoulder and the second cleared the bar.
Moses incurred the wrath of the home crowd, twice falling over in the hope of a free-kick, neither of which fooled the ref.
Ndidi then launched a long-range shot that was too close to Caballero to trouble him.
Morata began to look threatening, but sent one shot straight at Schmeichel and then sent a header over the bar from a decent position.

1718 chelsea home fac f

In the 36th minute Maguire’s through ball set up a race between Vardy and Caballero, which the Chelsea keeper narrowly won.
The box to box nature of the game was summed up when Chelsea took a 42nd minute lead. Mahrez was crowded out by three defenders as he attempted to get into the area, and Chelsea broke swiftly with Willian easing round Chilwell and racing upfield.
His perfect pass to Morata took three defenders out of the equation and the Spaniard produced a cool finish to beat Schmeichel, ending a thirteen game goal drought.

City started the second half in a more attacking frame of mind and Chelsea looked stretched. A minute into the second half Caballero’s clearance went straight to Mahrez, but his long range shot at an empty goal was high, wide and not very handsome.
In the 53rd minute a delightful chip from Ndidi found Vardy between the two centre-halves, but he ballooned his header over the bar.
As City pressed forward Albrighton attempted a snap-shot from a tight angle but Caballero fielded it comfortably.
At the other end Moses sent a dangerous cross, into the goalmouth but Schmeichel’s touch took it away from the waiting Morata.
Claude Puel made his first change in the 68th minute, bringing Okazaki on for Iheanacho.
There was a lengthy stoppage when Moses caught Iborra in the face with an elbow, and City seemed more switched on after the restart, grabbing a 76th minute equaliser.
Mahrez ghosted past Kante and Alonso down the right and cut the ball back to Vardy whose shot was blocked. Iborra seized on the rebound, which was also blocked, but came back to him for another shot which was well saved by Caballero. The loose ball fell for Vardy who blasted it home from close range.

1718 chelsea home fac d

City had their tails up now and three minutes after the goal Okazaki was a couple of inches away from putting a finishing touch to Chilwell’s cross.
City looked the more likely winners at this stage, but Caballero got down well to save a Vardy shot after he’d been sent through by Maguire.
Schmeichel then made two fine saves in as many seconds, twice denying Morata from close range.
Moses’ flying elbows claimed another victim in time-added-on and Albrighton had to be treated for a nosebleed, though Craig Pawson didn’t allow more added time for the lengthy stoppage.
So extra-time awaited for an already freezing crowd.

Pedro replaced Willian, just two minutes after the restart, before VAR was used for the first time after Fàbregas claimed an assault by Vardy.
With both teams looking leggy, Chelsea regained the lead in the 105th minute.
Kante chipped a ball into the area, Schmeichel came racing off his line to claim it, but Pedro nipped in ahead of him to nod the ball into an empty net.

1718 chelsea home fac b

For the second half of extra-time, Puel replaced Iborra and Simpson with Silva and Diabaté, and City had a quarter of an hour to keep their cup hopes alive.
Two minutes into the final period City won a free-kick 35 yards out.
Silva back-heeled it for Mahrez who lofted it into the area, Okazaki nodded it on for Maguire who blasted it across the goalmouth. It went just behind Diabate at the far post but got fed back to Mahrez who had a fierce shot blocked by Kante. The loose ball fell for Diabate but his shot was blocked by Moses.
As play raced to the other end Kante had a shot brilliantly blocked by Albrighton, City’s Man of the Match.
Puel’s final change saw Gray on for Albrighton, but Chelsea were in full time-wasting mode now and play was broken up.
Despite Craig Pawson pointing to his watch every time a Chelsea player went down, or took an age to take a free-kick he only added one minute on, and the final whistle brought loud booing from the stands and an inquest between the City players and the ref.

1718 chelsea home fac c

Sadly, a real opportunity to chase the one trophy that has always eluded City was missed, and the disappointment wasn’t eased when Chelsea drew Southampton in the post-match semi-final draw.

Claude Puel wasn’t impressed with the mysterious time-keeping: “They waste a lot of time and there was just one minute at the end. I think it was harsh. It would have been important to come back in the game. But they were trying to keep the result and to waste time because they have a lot of experience We can have more time to try to come back.”

Leicester: Schmeichel, Simpson (Diabaté 105), Morgan, Maguire, Chilwell, Mahrez, Iborra (Silva 105). Ndidi, Albrighton (Gray 115), Iheanacho (Okazaki 68), Vardy. Substitutes: Hamer, Dragovic, Fuchs.
Chelsea: Caballero, Azpilicueta, Christensen (Cahill 101), Rüdiger, Moses, Kanté, Bakayoko (Fàbregas 45) Alonso, Willian (Pedro 92) Hazard, Morata (Giroud 105)
Substitutes: Zappacosta, Emerson, Eduardo.

Referee: C Pawson. Attendance: 31,792.

PHOTOS: Simon Kimber.

——————————————————

We have produced a Limited Edition (75) print of the FiftySomething strip from The FOX Summer Special 2016 – celebrating City’s Premier League title win. 

fs poster

The A3 sized print will be posted to you rolled in a cardboard tube.

There aren’t many left, so order yours now. When they’re gone, they’re gone.

The prints cost £6.50 and post & packing is £3.45. (UK only)

You can pay online via Paypal HERE

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Leicester bury Baggies after early setback

West Bromwich Albion 1:4 Leicester City

1718 wba away c

Despite going a goal down, City added to Albion’s woes with a convincing 4-1 win at the Hawthorns on Saturday…

Claude Puel made five changes to his side, with Simpson, Iborra, Chilwell, Gray and Okazaki all returning to the starting XI.
But they got off to a shaky start on a rainy day in the West Midlands and went behind in the 8th minute. Chilwell missed an attempted interception, allowing Burke to race down the right and deliver a low cross that saw Rondon beating Morgan to the ball to divert it past Schmeichel.
Five minutes later Mahrez looped a cross to the far post but it just evaded both Gray and Vardy.
In the 17th minute City went close to going further behind when a Krychowiak shot took a deflection off Iborra and and was heading for the top corner before Schmeichel finger-tipped it on to the crossbar.
But City struck back in the 21st minute with a fantastically executed goal.
Mahrez played an inch perfect ball for Vardy who watched it over his shoulder before guiding a volley beyond Foster’s reach and into the net.
After his usual celebrations in that corner of the Hawthorns, referee Bobby Madley had a word with him.

1718 wba away a

It was end to end stuff for a while as Krychowiak dragged a shot wide when well placed, Gibbs made a timely clearance from a dangerous Chilwell cross, and Vardy had a goal disallowed for being narrowly offside as he ran on to Chilwell’s through ball.
Rondon then had a shot deflected over the bar.
1-1 at the break, with City on top after a poor opening spell.

Both sides were looking to push forward in the second half and it was an entertainingly open game.
Gray tried to catch Foster out from distance but the Albion keeper was alert to the danger.
Claude Puel made his first change on the hour, bringing Iheanacho on for Okazaki, and it soon brought its reward.
In the 62nd minute Iheanacho sent a delicate chip over the Baggies defence where Mahrez’s well timed run saw him take a touch before lobbing the ball over Foster to give City the lead.

1718 wba away d

City were in charge now. Mahrez almost sent Vardy in on goal and then Iheanacho set him up for a chance which Foster blocked.
Puel brought Albrighton on for Gray in the 67th minute.
Iheanacho then got his first Premier League goal for City in the 76th minute, heading home a Chilwell cross from the left before celebrating in front of the away end.
This sparked an exodus for the exits, with many Albion fans seemingly resigned to defeat and impending relegation.
Puel made his third change late on with Mahrez replaced by Diabate, to rousing applause from the visitors section.
In time added on City got a fourth when Albrighton hoisted a corner in from the left and Iborra rose above the Albion defence to plant a firm header into the net from six yards.

1718 wba away b

Claude Puel commented: “The first half was too open, end to end and box and box. The first half could have finished 3-3. It was crazy. We needed to manage our game better in the second half, with more calm and quality. It was interesting to keep the ball on the floor and work West Brom more. We found the clinical edge with a fantastic goal.”

West Brom: Foster, Nyom, Dawson, Hegazi, Gibbs, Krychowiak (Field 59), Livermore, Brunt, Burke (Robson-Kanu 83), Rondón, Phillips (Rodriguez 70).
Substitutes: Yacob, Myhill, McClean, McAuley.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan, Maguire, Chilwell, Iborra, Ndidi, Mahrez (Diabaté 88), Okazaki (Iheanacho 60), Gray (Albrighton 67), Vardy.
Substitutes: Dragovic, Jakupovic, James, Fuchs.

Referee: R Madley. Attendance: 23,558.

PHOTOS: Simon Kimber.

——————————————————

We are producing a Limited Edition (75) print of the FiftySomething strip from The FOX Summer Special 2016 – celebrating City’s Premier League title win. 

fs poster

The A3 sized print will be available from next Thursday (25th Jan) , but you can pre-order one now.
They will be posted to you rolled in a cardboard tube.

The prints cost £6.50 and post & packing is £3.45. (UK only)

You can pay online via Paypal HERE

Leave a comment

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Late Mahrez strike rescues a point for Leicester

Leicester City 1:1 AFC Bournemouth

Leicester City v Bournemouth - Premier League

A superb Riyad Mahrez free-kick in the 7th minute of time-added-on salvaged a point from a poor City performance against Bournemouth at the KPS on Saturday…

Claude Puel made three changes to his side, with Fuchs, Silva and Amartey in for Gray, Chilwell and Simpson.
In freezing conditions City had a decent opening spell.
In the 13th Albrighton set up Silva for a shot that flew well over. A minute later a wayward ball from the Cherries defence sent Mahrez clear on goal but his left-footed jab was blocked by Begovic.
However, the game changed in the 20th minute when Amartey appeared to pull a hamstring. With Simpson not even having a place on the bench, Chilwell came on and City changed to a back three. Albrighton may be many things, but he’s not a right back and it was an awkward fit that saw Bournemouth take charge.

Leicester City v Bournemouth - Premier League

King and Stanislas both had chances that went wide, and City were reduced to lumping the ball upfield where Vardy was frustrated by the linesman’s flag.
Maguire then rumbled upfield but had a shot blocked.
With Bournemouth pressing forward, City conceded a 34th minute penalty.  Albrighton put in a clumsy challenge on King as he was heading out of the penalty area and he picked himself up to send Schmeichel the wrong way from 12 yards. Or 11 and 3/4 yards as Schmeichel and Maguire protested to the referee that the ball wasn’t placed on the spot.
City produced little of note up to the break, looking devoid of ideas, and there was some booing at the end of the half.

There were no changes to either side and half-time, and City continued to struggle.
The visitors should have had another penalty awarded in the 54th minute when Ndidi shoved Daniels over in the area, but the ref waved play on.
Claude Puel made a change on the hour replacing Silva, who had not had a good afternoon, with Iheanacho.
A chance soon arrived after this change when Vardy’s cross from the left was half cleared to Chilwell whose well-struck shot was deflected over.

Leicester City v Bournemouth - Premier League

As City began to get a grip on the game the chances mounted.
Morgan headed over from a Mahrez cross, and Vardy sent a shot high and wide from a decent position.
Another Mahrez free-kick then picked out Morgan at the far post but his header flew across the face of goal.
An Albrighton corner found Maguire close in, but his first shot was cleared off the line back to him and his second was blocked, with Iheanacho’s attempted backheel going wide.
With Bournemouth now intent on defending their lead Puel brought Diabaté on for Fuchs in the 79th minute.
City piled on the pressure at this stage but an endless series of corners were mostly delivered straight into Begovic’s clutches.
Mahrez saw a fierce shot blocked with what might have been an arm as the 90 minutes approached, but Lee Probert waved away the appeals.
As the four minutes of time-added-on stretched to a sixth minute it looked as though the Cherries would hang on to the three points.
But then a foul on Ndidi 26 yards out presented City with one last chance.
Mahrez swung it round the four man wall and into the bottom left hand corner and a point had been salvaged with a moment of brilliance.

Leicester City v Bournemouth - Premier League

There was no disguising another poor performance from City however, and Claude Puel commented:  “I think we deserved something from the game but one point is not enough for us. I am pleased with the spirit and the mentality of the team. We tried until the end but it is not good for the points but for the momentum it is important.” 

Leicester: Schmeichel, Amartey (Chilwell 20), Morgan, Maguire, Fuchs (Diabaté 79), James, Ndidi, Silva (Iheanacho 59). Mahrez, Vardy, Albrighton.
Substitutes: Chilwell, Gray, Iheanacho, Hamer, Dragovic, Iborra, Diabaté.
Bournemouth: Begovic, Francis, S Cook, Aké, Smith, L Cook, Gosling, Daniels, King (Mousset 90), Wilson (Surman 77), Stanislas.
Substitutes: Boruc, Surman, Defoe, Fraser, Mousset, Simpson, Taylor.

Referee: L Probert. Attendance: 31,384.

PHOTOS: Simon Kimber.

——————————————————

We are producing a Limited Edition (75) print of the FiftySomething strip from The FOX Summer Special 2016 – celebrating City’s Premier League title win. 

fs poster

The A3 sized print will be available from next Thursday (25th Jan) , but you can pre-order one now.
They will be posted to you rolled in a cardboard tube.

The prints cost £6.50 and post & packing is £3.45. (UK only)

You can pay online via Paypal HERE

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized