Manchester City 5:1 Leicester City
A decent first half showing was followed by a second half collapse as Manchester City thrashed Leicester 5-1 at the Etihad on Saturday evening…
Claude Puel made two changes to his side, with Iheanacho and Simpson making way for James and Chilwell, and a three man defence being used initially.
Mahrez, having returned to the fold after a 10 day absence, had a place on the bench.
But Leicester found themselves a goal down after just two minutes.
De Bruyne, on the right, curved a perfect cross in behind Leicester’s defence and Sterling nipped ahead of Albrighton to net at the far post.
Leicester weathered a storm of City attacking play for 20 minutes after that, before striking back with a 24th minute equaliser. A wayward pass from Otamendi set up Vardy, who raced towards the penalty area and fired a low shot that that a slight deflection off Laporte and evaded Ederson.
City kept up their barrage and Schmeichel had a busy few minutes, fielding an effort from Gundogan and saving shots from Silva and Fernandinho.
De Bruyne got in on the left twice but had one shot blocked by Dragovic and the next saved by Schmeichel at the near post. Sterling then lost the use of his legs in the area but was ignored by referee Mike Jones.
De Bruyne then thumped a 35 yard free-kick into Schmeichel’s chest.
Five minutes before the break Sterling went clear on goal and rounded Schmeichel but Dragovic slid in to block his shot with a timely interception.
Despite the one-way traffic, Leicester went in level at the break having rallied after the worst possible start.
Sadly their resistance didn’t last, with Simpson on for Silva and four at the back, the visitors conceded another early goal.
De Bruyne, out on the left, threaded another superb pass between defenders and keeper and Aguero tapped it home at the far post.
Five minutes later the contest was over, when de Bruyne’s third assist sent Aguero in on goal, his shot squirming between Schmeichel’s arm and body.
The City pressure was relentless now and Claude Puel made a double change, replacing Chilwell and Diabate with Iheanacho and Mahrez. Both subs were cheered by both sets of fans.
Although the Leicester defence were still hard pressed Mahrez managed one decent run that was halted by Gundogan, who was yellow carded for a crude challenge. Albrighton’s free-kick was over-hit and a brief spell of respite was gone.
Aguero completed his hat-trick in the 77th minute, when the latest in a series of poor kicks by Schmeichel went straight to Aguero on the edge of the area, and he chipped it over the embarrassed keeper.
The rout was completed in the 90th minute when Aguero stuck home his fourth, an incredible dipping strike that went over Schmeichel’s head and in off the underside of the bar.
Claude Puel summed up: “We had some luck to come back in the game after their first goal, we conceded the goals in a bad time just at the beginning of both halves. They killed the game with the second and took confidence, and then it’s difficult to resist against a team like this. They press, they play between the lines. It’s difficult to start and have a certain position against them – but it’s a lot of goals conceded, which is a shame.”
Although it is difficult to gauge a performance against such a magnificent Manchester City side, the second half display was disappointing and Puel needs to get Leicester’s season back on track.
Man City: Ederson, Walker, Otamendi (Stones 81), Laporte, Zinchenko (Danilo 65), De Bruyne, Fernandinho (Foden 80), Gündogan, Bernardo Silva, Agüero, Sterling. Substitutes: Bravo, Kompany, Nmecha, Diaz.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Dragovic, Maguire, Fuchs, Albrighton, James, Ndidi, Adrien Silva (Simpson 45), Chilwell (Iheanacho 62), Diabaté (Mahrez 62), Vardy.
Substitutes: Gray, Jakupovic, Iborra, Benalouane.
Referee: M Jones. Attendance: 54,416.
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.
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