Following Thursday’s clash with Zorya Luhansk, manager Brendan Rodgers made 10 changes to his starting XI, with only full-back James Justin, operating at left-back, remaining from City’s midweek trip to Ukraine.
Kasper Schmeichel returned in goal, donning a special captain’s armband in support of the Rainbow Laces campaign, while Spanish attacker Ayoze Pérez made his first Premier League start since mid-October.
It took just 10 minutes for City to conjure up a huge chance for the opening goal, and it was the returning Pérez who carved it out as the Spaniard slipped in Jamie Vardy before the striker’s first-time effort cannoned off the post.
The Foxes looked dangerous going forward and the overload from right wing-back Marc Albrighton led to an opener as his strike was initially blocked before Pérez was on hand to smash beyond Aaron Ramsdale for his first goal of 2020/21.
However, the Blades showed their fight and were level almost immediately. A corner from John Lundstram was met by Oli McBurnie, who got up well to head into the net to restore parity in South Yorkshire.
Chris Wilder's men looked to be fortunate to have 11 men still on the pitch when Max Lowe - already on a booking - tripped Pérez on the edge of the box for a foul that could have warranted another yellow card.
City continued to dominate play, though, and in first-half stoppage time it looked as if they’d restored their advantage as James Maddison arrowed a strike towards goal, but, similar to Vardy’s earlier effort, he hit the post and the Blades survived once again.
Both teams traded blows after the interval and when Ramsdale dropped a cross on 68 minutes, Tielemans looked to capitalise on his error, but the hosts’ goalkeeper did well to recover as he got a glove to the Leicester No.8’s strike, which looped up and on to the top of the net.
Then came a double change for the Foxes, with Papy Mendy and goalscorer Pérez making way for Wilfred Ndidi – featuring in the Premier League for the first time since September – and Kelechi Iheanacho.
With 15 minutes remaining, Vardy looked to latch onto a long pass, only for Ramsdale to race out of his area and head the ball away, while Iheanacho was denied a strike at the last minute before Christian Fuchs sent a drive over the bar shortly after.
Schmeichel was able to watch an ambitious effort from substitute Rhian Brewster sail wide of his right-hand post on 84 minutes, but it was City - as the game headed into injury time - who’d find a deserved winner at Bramall Lane.
City’s pressing resulted in Maddison recovering the ball in midfield before he sent a pin-point pass over the top of the Blades defence and into the path of Vardy, who burst through before side-footing past Ramsdale to claim all three points.
The City No.9 finishes beyond Aaron Ramsdale to secure a 2-1 win for his side.
After the first half ended 1-1, despite City also striking the woodwork twice following Ayoze Pérez's opener, it would take a clinical moment to settle the game in South Yorkshire.
That moment fell to Jamie Vardy, who on 90 minutes, raced through onto a James Maddison pass before applying a perfect finish past Aaron Ramsdale.
Marc Albrighton put in a huge shift at right wing-back, prompting Gerry Taggart to select him as his Man of the Match.
Speaking on LCFC Radio, Gerry Taggart said: “There’s been one or two that have put a really good shift in and are always trying to drive the team forward, to do the right thing at the right time. I think, for his all-round game, I have to give the Man of the Match to Marc Albrighton."
Where do we stand?
The Spaniard was positioned well to pounce on a loose ball in the six-yard box.
After 11 outings in the Premier League this term, Leicester City sit third in the table, just a point off leaders Chelsea, with 21 points on the board thanks to their 2-1 win at Bramall Lane.
Jamie Vardy's late strike sparked jubilant scenes among the Foxes.
Leicester City conclude their UEFA Europa League Group G campaign on Thursday when they entertain AEK Athens (8pm kick-off) in the hope of topping their pool, before a second home match in four days sees Brighton & Hove Albion visit Filbert Way in the Premier League (7:15pm kick-off).
All times GMT.
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