James Maddison & Jamie Vardy

The Season So Far: Clean Sweep In November

Fresh from a record-breaking October, Leicester City carried their momentum into November with a trio of Premier League victories.
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The month started with awards nominations for Brendan Rodgers, Jamie Vardy, Youri Tielemans, Ricardo Pereira, Çağlar Söyüncü and James Maddison after a string of brilliant performances in October.

It was Söyüncü who spoke ahead of City’s opening fixture in November, as the Turkey international expressed his happiness after a brilliant start to 2019/20.  

“I’ve got all these young mates playing alongside me and I’m very proud to be part of this team and we will do our best to finish at the top,” he said.

The Premier League action began in front of 25,000 spectators at Selhurst Park, where City were hosted by a Crystal Palace side that had been notoriously difficult to face in recent seasons.

Unchanged from the stunning 9-0 Premier League win over Southampton nine days prior, Söyüncü was the man to put City in front with a close-range header before the hour mark, while Vardy’s 10th goal of the season sealed all three points.

“What you need in your team at tough places like here is spirit and we have that in bucket loads,” Rodgers said at full-time. “The spirit here is very strong, the team has got good momentum and we want to keep that momentum going.

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Çağlar Söyüncü
Çağlar Söyüncü

Çağlar Söyüncü scored his first goal for the Football Club against Crystal Palace.

“You do that by fighting, by scrapping, and then earning the right to play, and we did that.”

Indeed, momentum continued to flow into their next fixture – a Saturday night showdown with Arsenal at King Power Stadium six days after their trip to the capital.

“We’re doing well at the minute and we’re keeping the same mentality,” said Spaniard Ayoze Pérez. “Above all, that’s going to be important for us.”

Facing an Arsenal side that had not won in the Premier League for over a month, City sensed an opportunity – and took it.  

A capacity crowd on Filbert Way watched on as Vardy finished off a fine team move before Maddison’s excellent strike secured a second-successive 2-0 triumph.

City’s best-ever start to a Premier League campaign saw them climb to second in the division, and their display against the Gunners earned plenty of plaudits.

“You could give it to four of five players!” LCFC Radio’s Gerry Taggart purred when asked to select his Man of the Match.

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Jamie Vardy & James Maddison
Jamie Vardy & James Maddison

Both City stars were on the scoresheet against the Gunners.

Rodgers noted: “I’m so, so happy for the players, delighted for the supporters, and it’s a great response to losing our game against Liverpool, before the last international break.”

Scorer of a fine goal, Maddison added: “You should never take for granted playing in the Premier League, never mind scoring, especially in big games like this.

"I’ll never forget my roots of being a young lad coming through League 1 and playing in Scotland and in the Championship.”

Maddison’s rise was about to hit a new level, too. The City No.10 – one of 14 Foxes to receive an international call-up – would make his senior England debut five days later.

Coming off the bench early in the first half, Maddison joined Leicester team-mate Ben Chilwell on the Wembley Stadium pitch as the Three Lions thrashed Montenegro 7-0 in their 1,000th game.

Posting on social media, Maddison said: “Unbelievable feeling to make my England debut tonight. A moment I won't ever forget.”

A successful final international break of the year was followed up by a trip to Brighton & Hove Albion, who had beaten Tottenham Hotspur, Everton and Norwich City in their three most recent fixtures at Amex Stadium.

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Jamie Vardy
Jamie Vardy

Jamie Vardy converted his penalty at the second attempt versus Brighton.

With Leicester focusing very much on their own performances, Academy graduate Harvey Barnes said ahead of the match: “There’s a lot of talk about Europe and other things like that, but I think for us at the minute, it’s just about continuing the run and seeing if we can finish as high up as we can.”

Continue the run they did.

The Foxes were once again unchanged, with Nigeria midfielder Wilfred Ndidi making his 100th Premier League appearance on the south coast.

Pérez put City ahead after a lightning counter-attack, spearheaded by Vardy, while the Leicester No.9 was also on target from the spot late on after a foul on substitute Demarai Gray.

Vardy's first spot-kick was saved by Mat Ryan before Maddison headed in the rebound. However, VAR ruled the penalty would have to be retaken due to encroachment, and Vardy made no mistakes with his second attempt.

Goalscorer Pérez reflected: "It feels really, really good. We keep pushing. Another three points, [a] clean sheet and two goals, so I think it's a very, very, very positive afternoon for us."

Leicester’s fifth Premier League win in a row left them second in the division heading into a December in which they would contest eight fixtures.

Leicester City Crest

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