- Youri Tielemans praises Leicester City’s character following their 2-1 Premier League win at Aston Villa
- The Foxes recorded their ninth away win of the 2020/21 Premier League season
- James Maddison and Harvey Barnes were on the scoresheet at Villa Park
The Foxes scored twice in the space of just five first-half minutes to carry a 2-0 advantage into the break, and while Villa pulled a goal back early on in the second period, the visitors were able to claim all three points.
And Tielemans, who made his 40th appearance of the season across all competitions for club and country, heaped praise on City for the way they were able to handle the hosts’ attacking threats.
“I think it was a really good first half, especially,” he told LCFC TV. “I think [in the] second half, where they score early on, we had to stay compact, stay very narrow and dig in until the end and to keep the score, and that shows our mentality, our composure as well under pressure.
“I think [the] first half was really good, we scored early on. We scored two really good goals and then we tried to keep the ball and manage the game and [the] second half was, I think, maybe a bit of fatigue that was coming in and we didn't keep the ball as much as we would [have done].
Goals: Aston Villa 1 Leicester City 2
Enjoy the goals from Villa Park as Leicester City registered their 15th Premier League win of the season on Sunday.
“But I think it's a good win, especially here. It's always a tough game to play and they are a good side as well. They are up there with us and today was a massive win to show that we're still up there.”
While goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel did not have many significant saves to make at Villa Park, Tielemans pointed to the Denmark international’s other outstanding attributes as a source of inspiration.
“No, that's true, I don't remember one (a save), but maybe one when he got out and it was just offside,” Tielemans said of Schmeichel’s involvement.
“I think he is very important at the back there and coaching the guys, and then the defence is coaching us [in] midfield and we try and get it onto the front players. So, I think it's really a team performance today and the other games as well.”
James Maddison’s neat finish, which hit the post before finding the back of the net, was added to by Harvey Barnes’ 13th goal of the season across all competitions, and Tielemans spoke highly of the City Academy graduate at full-time.
I think European football is always very nice to play. You always play very different types of teams, which is very enjoyable and hopefully we can finish the job on Thursday. It is going to be a very tough game, but I hope the guys will be fired up for it.Youri Tielemans LCFC TV
The No.8 said: “He is really good. Especially his end product is really, really good this year. He has improved a lot on that, and I think that's just a question of confidence and not thinking about: 'Yes, should I score? Should I give the pass?'.
“I think it's just credit to him. He worked a lot in pre-season. He worked a lot last year. He didn't have that luck maybe last year in his last pass or shot and this year everything is coming really well for him and for the team.”
When asked about City’s ambitions in the UEFA Europa League ahead of Thursday’s Round of 32 second leg clash with Slavia Prague, Tielemans added: “I think European competition is always very nice to play.
“You always play very different types of teams, which is very enjoyable and hopefully we can finish the job on Thursday. It is going to be a very tough game, but I hope the guys will be fired up for it.”
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