Claude Puel

Puel Hails City's 'Fantastic Attitude'

After Claude Puel’s Leicester City roared to a 2-0 Premier League win over Everton, the new manager praised the character of his players during his first game at the helm.
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- Leicester City beat Everton 2-0 in the Premier League at King Power Stadium
- The match was manager Claude Puel’s first in charge since his appointment last week
- Jamie Vardy and Demarai Gray scored in the first half to put City in control
- The Foxes move up to 11th place in the table with their third straight win in all competitions

In a changed 4-2-3-1 system, City flew out of the blocks and took a brilliant lead inside 20 minutes when Demarai Gray tore through the Everton defence, allowing Riyad Mahrez to put the ball on a plate for Jamie Vardy.

The excellent Gray then doubled the lead before half time as his cross was sliced into the Everton net by defender Jonjoe Kenny for 2-0 in front of a jubilant King Power Stadium crowd.

The Foxes had further chances to extend the lead but eventually saw out the game and a clean sheet which moves them up to 11th place in the table and marked a third consecutive victory.

Speaking afterwards, a thrilled Puel said: “Of course it is very good to start with a good result. I was impressed to see my players with quality in the first half with the ball. It was very interesting to see this. They tried to play good football.

“The first goal is fantastic and I like this. In the second half it was more difficult because some of the players were tired. It was difficult to keep the same intensity. We played a good team in Everton and they tried to get back into the game. But we there was some solid work from the players in the second half with a fantastic attitude. We had a good structure and the character was fantastic.”

There were seven changes to the starting XI for the Foxes from the team that beat Leeds United in the Carabao Cup, with Ben Chilwell and Gray both joining Riyad Mahrez in a midfield three behind lone striker Vardy.

“I discussed this with my assistant Michael Appleton,” said Puel. “Also I know Gray for example from England Under-21s. I like this player and I took my responsibility with the feeling I could help but it was important to make this decision to help us tactically.

“We put in place a new system and these players listened a lot. It was important to keep them with this concentration and confidence from the last game, winning as against Swansea and Leeds. It was important to keep this good work. It was chance to bring in some information without disturbing them.

“Of course when you choose the starting line-up it is difficult. We tried something about a feeling, about a balance for the team. I know Shinji Okazaki scored last week. Marc Albrighton has played well also and he was a starting player. But it was important to see all the team and other players.

“I was interested to see the attitude of the players because they had a good spirit, a good attitude and worked hard without showing some frustration. This is very important for the squad for the future.”

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