Our FAN REPORTER Scott Davies was at the Swansea game which saw Leicester City move clear at the top of the Premier league…..
Leicester visited Wales second largest City on Saturday. You’ll have to go back to a league cup game in 1986 for the Foxes last win away to the Swans, at their previous Vetch Field stadium which they vacated in 2005, before moving to the Liberty Stadium which they share with the Ospreys Rugby Union team.
The Liberty Stadium hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for the Foxes, losing all previous games there, most recently last season in arguably the worst performance of the campaign. The televised match is probably best remembered for Nigel Pearson insisting the goals were measured as they looked too big!
City are still on the crest of a wave losing only twice in the previous 25 league games, so confidence is high in the camp. Vardy was looking to equal the top flight consecutive goal scoring games of 12 set by Jimmy Dunn in 1931 for Sheffield United.
Leicester kicked off and went straight for the jugular and found themselves 1-0 up after just 5 minutes. Vardy chased a lost cause, forcing Kyle Bartley to run the ball out for an unnecessary corner. Marc Albrighton swung the cross in and Riyad Mahrez bundled the ball into the net.
City continued to press and Vardy had a glorious chance on 14 when he chased down a clearance which set himself up for a one on one with Fabianski, only to aim his shot straight at the Swansea stopper. However, on 22 minutes, the Foxes were 2 goals to the good after superb work from Vardy and Kante. Vardy controlled the ball beautifully and laid it off to Kante who proved he has more to his game than tenacious tackling as he delivered a pin point lofted through ball to Mahrez who stopped the ball dead and delivered a finesse finish into the bottom left corner. Replays suggest Mahrez may have been offside, but it counted nonetheless.
2 minutes later, Mahrez should have either scored himself or set up Vardy for a City third. Ulloa did all the hard work to put Mahrez through with a deft pass with the outside of his boot. Mahrez went for glory and you can’t blame him, but the better option was probably Vardy to his left. Fabianski easily saved Mahrez effort in the end.
On 38 minutes, Mahrez set Ulloa on his way to goal, but the Argentine curled his shot wide of the far post. Again, Vardy was probably in a better position to score and City should have been out of sight.
After the break, the Swans had a decent 10 minute spell and City had to be resolute in their defending. Swansea came close, hitting the crossbar during this period, but City stood up to the challenge and put the game out of sight on 66. Kante won possession in his own half and drove forward to the Swans 18 yard box. He slipped the ball to Vardy, who probably could have shot himself, but he unselfishly squared the ball to Mahrez to give him his first hat trick of his career, sending the City faithful into a frenzy.
Vardy had another chance to make it 12 in a row on 73, but smashed his shot high and wide after some brilliant first touch control. Swansea struck the post in the 80th minute, but rarely threatened despite having the lions share of possession. City are yet to win a game in that area of stats this season, but are proving that it’s not how much you have the ball, it’s what you do with it that counts.
Man City’s loss to Stoke earlier in the day meant that City moved top on their own, 2 points above Arsenal who leapfrogged Man City into Second following their win at home to Sunderland.
Many pundits are saying we won’t win the league and deep down I know this, however, it is wide open this season. Stoke beat Man City who have already lost 4 games (no team has lost more than 5 and won the premier league), United are the bore draw specialist under LVG, Chelsea are out of sight at the wrong end of the table and Liverpool were beaten by Newcastle this weekend, who Leicester steamrolled past 2 weeks ago. Arsenal are probably the favourites, but on this current run and the more people write us off, I think our players will feed off this and may just deliver the unthinkable!
Back in the real world, we are 8 points off the magic 40 points. We are staying up!
Man of the match – Riyad Mahrez