Vicente Iborra

Foxes End 2017 With A Narrow Loss

Leicester City could not hold onto their early lead as Liverpool came from behind to record a 2-1 Premier League win at Anfield on Saturday.
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Claude Puel made four changes to the side that faced Watford on Boxing Day, with Daniel Amartey, Christian Fuchs, Vicente Iborra and Demarai Gray all returning to the starting XI.

It was the duo of Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez that combined to put the Foxes in front on Merseyside, as City’s No.9 fired home the Algerian’s low cross on three minutes.

The Reds responded, though, as Mohamed Salah shot wide before Kasper Schmeichel was on hand to deny James Milner and Philippe Coutinho in quick succession.

The Denmark stopper then saw Salah send a chip off target, while Roberto Firmino had an effort saved midway through the first half.

Some fine defending from Harry Maguire and Amartey prevented Liverpool from levelling before the interval, but Jurgen Klopp’s men finally got their goal seven minutes into the second period.

A clever backheel from Sadio Mane found Salah, who cut inside before converting past the defiant Schmeichel to breach the City back line.

With momentum behind them, Liverpool went close to scoring a second on the hour mark as Salah lifted a strike onto the top of the net, while at the other end of the field, Vardy was unfortunate to see a low strike blocked following some good work.

A sweetly-struck half-volley from Wilfred Ndidi flew inches wide of Loris Karius’ upright on 67 minutes prior to another save from Schmeichel, who this time held onto a drive from Coutinho.

But for all of their resilience, the Foxes conceded a second with 14 minutes to play. Salah did well to get past Maguire before slotting into the bottom corner for his 17th Premier League goal of the campaign.

Puel introduced Shinji Okazaki, Islam Slimani and Matty James in the second period, but there would be no equaliser for City, who returned to Leicester empty-handed.

Major moment

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Marc Albrighton
Marc Albrighton

Marc Albrighton attempts to dispossess the in-form Mohamed Salah.

Having repelled wave after wave of Liverpool attack in the first half, the Foxes will have been happy to head into the break with a clean sheet intact.

But a moment of magic from Sadio Mane to set up Mohamed Salah proved to be the key for the hosts, who after scoring their first goal gave themselves a foundation to go on and win the game.

Who impressed?

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Jamie Vardy
Jamie Vardy

The England international netted his 10th goal of the season against Liverpool.

Jamie Vardy’s 10th strike of the 2017/18 campaign broke the deadlock on Merseyside, but it is not just goals that the frontman adds to the team.

His relentless work rate, again on display at Anfield, is a vital part of the Leicester press and after being withdrawn with 15 minutes to play, he is likely to be fresh for Monday.

Where do we stand?

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Shinji Okazaki
Shinji Okazaki

The Japan international escapes Liverpool defender Joel Matip.

With defeats also coming for Watford and Everton, the Foxes remain eighth in the Premier League table. They are now seven points off seventh-placed Burnley.

Coming up…

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Vicente Iborra
Vicente Iborra

Spaniard Vicente Iborra challenges Loris Karius for the ball.

Just two days after Saturday’s clash with Liverpool, the Foxes host Huddersfield Town at King Power Stadium for their first game of the New Year (3pm kick-off).

Leicester City Crest

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