West Brom 1 Leicester 4
Report by Kate Thompson
I remember hearing a Leicester supporter on Radio 5 live many years ago, saying that all Leicester supporters had their optimism gene surgically removed at birth! He wasn’t altogether wrong and supporting this team for so many years makes you wary of looking too far forward.
I went to this game fearing the worst and this was not dissipated by the indifferent start. Claude Puel made five changes, two of which I was unconvinced by. Ben Chilwell is great going forward but surely his first job is as a left back and I’m afraid he was at fault for West Brom’s goal. In my opinion, Fuchs is a safer bet.
Gray is undoubtedly talented but he needs to learn that it is a team game and the best option is rarely to have a shot himself unless he is confident that he can score. Simpson was no surprise, likewise Okazaki, and I was pleased to see Iborra come back into the team. However, I was also pleased last week that Silva played, but sadly he had an indifferent game and was not even in the squad for this game.
When Rondon scored in the 7th minute my heart sank, but this time the outcome was very different. Having said that, had Schmeichel not acrobatically tipped a goal-bound shot onto the bar before we equalised, we might not have seen what turned out to be a comfortable win.
The equaliser, described as a thing of beauty, was probably one of the best goals Vardy has scored; Mahrez put a peach of a long pass over his shoulder and without looking at the goal Vardy scored – with his left foot! – into the bottom right-hand corner.
Like most Leicester fans I imagine, I needed to watch it later on television to appreciate what a remarkable goal it was. On ‘Match of the day’ on Saturday evening Frank Lampard was eulogising about it and said it was one of the best goals he had ever seen. And it was scored by little old Leicester!
We managed to go in at half-time without conceding but the second half was totally different. In the 62nd minute Iheanacho put a delightful pass through to Mahrez who dinked the ball over Foster in the West Brom goal to put us in front.
The West Brom players’ heads went down although I thought they tried to the end, and it was no surprise when Iheanacho scored himself in the 76th minute. The rout was completed by Iborra scoring in added time.
It was interesting that the last two goals were headers and it was refreshing to have two tall players who could make the most of the numerous crosses, especially from Albrighton (on as sub for Gray in the 67th minute).
OK, West Brom looked a beaten side long before the end, but how many times have we seen teams in a similar situation frustrate the Leicester players? Most of them came out of the game with credit, although Okazaki had a disappointing return and it was no surprise when he was replaced by Iheanacho in the 60th minute.
The final substitution was Diabete for Mahrez in the 88th minute, perhaps because the latter had picked up a yellow card (as had Vardy and Ndidi). My hope is that this display will give them confidence to win against our nemesis Chelsea next Sunday and progress to the semi final of the FA Cup.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan (c), Maguire, Chilwell, Iborra, Ndidi, Mahrez, Gray, Okazaki, Vardy. Subs: Jakupović, Dragović, Fuchs, James, Diabaté, Albrighton, Iheanacho
The views expressed in this report are the opinions of the Trust member nominated to file the report only and do not represent the views of the Foxes Trust organisation