Tawanda Maswanhise & Jake Wakeling

Foxes Find First PL2 Success With Everton Triumph

Leicester City's Development Squad produced a stunning performance to claim their first three points of the campaign against Everton Under-23s on Monday.

It was the perfect way to bounce back from the home defeat to Crystal Palace last time out, as the Foxes scored three at LCFC Training Ground in Premier League 2 Division 1.

Three changes were made to the starting XI as Bayli Spencer-Adams and first-team defender Filip Benković both came into the backline, while Wanya Marcal-Madivadua was also handed a start in midfield.

City switched shape too, opting to play a 3-5-2 formation, with captain Vontae Daley-Campbell and Kasey McAteer acting as the wing backs in a fluid system.

Everton provided the game’s first attempt as Joe Anderson was allowed forward and took aim, but failed to trouble Brad Young. A more dangerous move came down the right via Stan Mills’ cross-turned-shot, which flashed across goal without any of the Toffees’ forwards able to get a touch.

But it was the Foxes who broke the deadlock when McAteer’s turn and run forward was parried by Zan Luk Leban into the path of Wakeling, who duly tapped home for his third of the season in all competitions.

The hosts were now starting to control possession and, after a free-flowing passing move, Daley-Campbell played in Wakeling, but his shot flew wide, before more good play ended with Tawanda Maswanhise firing off target.

Meanwhile, Lewis Dobbin searched for the equaliser but couldn’t find the net on three occasions in quick succession, including a fine save from Young to deny the Everton striker.

Just over 10 minutes before the break, City grabbed a second. And it was a goal all of Maswanhise’s own making as he shifted the ball onto his left and powered a strike into the far top corner.

A mere few minutes after that goal, Young was on hand again to produce a smart diving stop from the lively Dobbin, whose volley was heading in, before Sean McAllister struck narrowly wide for the away side.

Early in the second half, Maswanhise continued to cause problems, firstly seeing a shot diverted off target via a block and, after Marcal-Madivadua glided through, firing past the near post. The winger’s next effort also found Leban in the way.

The third goal arrived just before the hour mark when Daley-Campbell exchanged a one-two with Sammy Braybrooke down the right, and drove the ball hard and low into the far corner from a tight angle to all-but seal the victory.

The visitors continued to push to get back into the contest, however, as Charlie Whitaker forced a point-blank save from Young, who spread himself well, before substitute Rafa Garcia somehow couldn’t turn the ball home after being presented with a golden opportunity. 

Further pressure was applied by Leicester, too, who were on the hunt for more when Wakeling struck the side netting from the right and Marcal-Madivadua shot wide.

Young was the busier of the two ‘keepers in the closing stages, making an instinctive save down low to his left to keep out Whitaker once more. Although he could do nothing to prevent Rhys Hughes slotting in a consolation deep into stoppage-time, it was a deserved victory for City’s Development Squad.

Major moment… 

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Leicester City's Development Squad
Leicester City's Development Squad

Jake Wakeling is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring the opener just six minutes in.

The early goal, coming courtesy of Jake Wakeling’s finish after just six minutes, was a real confidence booster for the Foxes, who took control of the game for large parts from thereon in, leading to a comprehensive victory in Seagrave.

Who impressed?

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Sammy Braybrooke
Sammy Braybrooke

It was a composed performance from Sammy Braybrooke in the heart of midfield.

Speaking during LCFC TV’s live coverage, former Leicester City manager Micky Adams commented: “I think there has been some outstanding performances out there. [Sammy] Braybrooke, I was really impressed with him. I know he’s only played 70 minutes, but his passing and weight of pass, particularly for the third goal, has been outstanding. He always looked to be involved in the game.”

Where does it leave us?

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Tawanda Maswanhise
Tawanda Maswanhise

Tawanda Maswanhise celebrates scoring the stunning second before half-time.

The Foxes’ Development Squad climb up above Everton and into ninth in the early Premier League 2 Division 1 standings, with five points from their opening four games of the 2021/22 season.

Coming up… 

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Vontae Daley-Campbell
Vontae Daley-Campbell

A maiden goal of the season from skipper Vontae Daley-Campbell made the game safe for the Foxes.

City are straight back in league action this Friday evening as they travel to the south coast to meet Brighton & Hove Albion at AMEX Elite Football Performance Centre (7pm BST kick-off).

The details…

City: Young; Daley-Campbell (c), Spencer-Adams, R. Nelson, McAteer; Braybrooke (Ewing 76'), Marcal-Madivadua; Suengchitthawon (Flynn 69'); Maswanhise (Fitzhugh 75'), Wakeling.

Subs not used: Odunze, T. Pennant.

Goals: Wakeling 6’, Maswanhise 34’, Daley-Campbell 59’.

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