Report: Rotherham United 1 Leicester City 2
- David Nugent makes it 2-0 with an effort from the edge of the box
- Grant Ward pulls a goal back for the Millers with 10 minutes to go
- Claudio Ranieri fields a fresh XI from the side that beat Burton Albion on Tuesday
- A total of 10 first team players complete 90 minutes
- Youngsters Ryan Watson and Callum Elder each play 45 minutes
Leicester City continued their unbeaten pre-season with a victory against Rotherham United at the New York Stadium on Wednesday evening.
Just 24 hours after the 2-1 win over Burton Albion, the Foxes beat Steve Evans’ side by the same scoreline thanks to two goals in the second half.
It was Riyad Mahrez who broke the deadlock, dispatching a fine effort from range, before David Nugent doubled City’s advantage 16 minutes later.
The Millers found the back of the net on 80 minutes through Grant Ward, but there would be no comeback for the hosts as the Foxes defended well late-on for their third win in four pre-season friendly fixtures.
Manager Claudio Ranieri fielded a fresh starting XI to the side that beat Burton, this time operating a 4-2-3-1 formation.
The game saw 45 minutes each for youngsters Ryan Watson and Callum Elder, while 10 first team players notched up 90 minutes.
An even opening period saw young midfielder Watson lift an effort high of the mark, while Academy graduate Liam Moore, who set the early tone with a shuddering early challenge on Danny Ward, couldn’t connect with Mahrez’s free kick at the back post.
It was Mahrez who would first test goalkeeper Kelle Roos with 11 minutes on the clock. The Algeria international winger cut inside and shifted the ball onto his right foot, forcing the shot-stopper into a low save.
Mahrez turned provider again just after half-hour mark, curling into striker Nugent, who couldn’t generate the desired power to beat Roos.
Moore was on hand at the other end shortly after, blocking Matt Derbyshire’s strike, before Mark Schwarzer did well to hold Emmanuel Ledesma’s effort from distance.
Jeffrey Schlupp then ventured forward as the game approached half-time, lashing a powerful strike wide from inside the Rotherham area.
Ledesma brought the first period to an end, curling a 25-yard free kick over Schwarzer’s bar after Moore had been penalised for holding Derbyshire.
An early second half chance fell the Millers’ way as substitute Jordan Bowery pinched the ball off Ritchie De Laet, but slotted wide while one-on-one with Schwarzer.
A neat through-ball from Schlupp then released Nugent, who latched onto the pass, only to miscue his strike with 51 minutes gone.
Moore kept the game level next, clearing a low cross that would have certainly been turned in if the lurking Derbyshire had the chance to connect.
It took a moment of superb solo work for City to take the lead. Mahrez, a threat all game, received a pass on the right and drifted inside, driving in a fine strike from the edge of the box to put the Foxes 1-0 up – his second goal of pre-season after netting against Lincoln City last week.
Schwarzer was on hand again on the hour mark, collecting a placed effort from Bowery at his near post, before watching a strike from Grant Ward fly past his upright minutes later.
Rotherham went in search of an equaliser, only thwarted by a well-timed block from Moore, but it would be the visitors who would score the next goal.
Schlupp surged forward and slipped in Nugent, who hit a low drive towards goal that found the back of the net, despite Roos getting a hand to the effort. The England international also took his pre-season tally to two goals having scored at Mansfield Town at the weekend.
Rotherham pulled one back with 10 minutes to play through Grant Ward, who beat Schwarzer from distance with a swerving strike to get his side back in the game.
Leicester chased a third goal with efforts from Danny Simpson and Schlupp, while goalscorer Ward saw his clever strike saved by Schwarzer to deny him a second.
But the goals of Mahrez and Nugent were enough for City, who conclude their pre-season campaign at Birmingham City on Saturday.
ROTHERHAM: Roos, Collins, Maguire (Richardson 46), D. Ward (Bowery 19), Ledesma (Smallwood 71), Green (Frecklington 46), White (Yates 84), Halford (Wood 86), G. Ward (Warren 89), Thorpe, Derbyshire (Clarke-Harris 71)
SUBS NOT USED: Collin
GOAL: G. Ward 80
CITY: Schwarzer (c), De Laet, Moore, Watson (Elder 46), Simpson, Lawrence, Drinkwater, Schlupp, Mahrez, Nugent, Ulloa
SUBS NOT USED: Maddison, Cain, Panayiotou, Davis, Stankevicius
GOALS: Mahrez 56, Nugent 72
ATTENDANCE: 3,678 (524 away)
REFEREE: Mr M. Brown
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