Leicester vs Chelsea 19/1/21 – Full Match Report

Updated: Jan 24, 2021

Chelsea crumble at the King Power, as goals from Wilfred Ndidi and James Maddison send the Foxes to the top of the Premier League.

Pre-game:

For the first time in over a month, Chelsea departed the capital as they travelled to the King Power Stadium to take on 3rd place Leicester. Both sides looked to pick up maximum points ahead of Tuesday nights anticipated clash, with every point proving to become even more valuable as the fight for top 4 develops.


Out of the two teams, its Brendan Rodgers Leicester who carry the most form as they look for their fourth consecutive win. This contrasts the recent poor form of Chelsea, who looked to make it back-to-back wins following on from Saturday’s 1-0 victory over Fulham.


With form comes consistency, which is exactly what Leicester were looking for as their starting 11 was named completely unchanged for the third game in a row. Frank Lampard made four adjustments to his Chelsea side, with Reece James, Kai Havertz, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Tammy Abraham all returning to the starting lineup.


First half:

Following a brave selection from Lampard, the intent was clear that Chelsea intended on making a bold statement through their attack-minded line-up. However, after just 6 minutes, Leicester found themselves aheadthrough Wilfred Ndidi.


The midfielder shot from range on his weaker foot, slicing the ball towards goal with there being nothing that goalkeeper Mendy could do. The ball was fired off the post and into the back of the net, suddenly Leicester had the lead and Chelsea were trailing.


The Blues found themselves in deep trouble, with Leicester having a 100%-win rate every time that they had scored first in the Premier League this season.


Chelsea struggled to get a grip on the game, and on the 15th minute nearly found themselves trailing by a second as James Maddison clipped the top of the crossbar. Leicester found themselves dominating, and in full control of the game.


4 minutes later, Chelsea saw their first piece of real possession after struggling to get a foothold in the game. After making a bursting run with the ball, Reece James saw an attempt on goal saved by Kasper Schmeichel. The move resulted in a corner, with Thiago Silva’s header falling straight into the hands of the Danish goalkeeper.


Leicester however responded well and made their intent for another goal clear. Once again, Mendy found himself tested as he palmed Marc Albrighton’s effort over the crossbar – a relatively easy stop for the Senegalese international.


Chelsea’s best chance of the game fell on the 31st minute, as The Blues broke away on the counterattack through Christian Pulisic. The American then slotted in Callum Hudson-Odoi, but his effort could find the side netting – a chance wasted for the visitors.


It was end-to-end action at the King Power, as Jamie Vardy broke away from an unorganised Chelsea defence 2 minutes later. Mendy was once again called into action, with Thiago Silva clearing up the rebound which was heading out for a corner.


Mendy’s save looked to give Chelsea the boost that they desperately needed, as Christian Pulisic was involved once again with The Blues, who thought that they had won themselves a penalty. The winger was brought down by defender Jonny Evans, with referee Craig Pawson immediately pointing to the spot.


But as with every decision, VAR had a second look at the tackle, and corrected Pawson by changing the decision to a free kick on the edge of the area. The set piece was taken by Mason Mount, with his attempt failing to hit the target.


Chelsea’s change of luck took a further turn for the worse, as James Maddison doubled Leicester’s lead just minutes later – as the Foxes took a strong lead into the half-time break.


A forward pass found the England international as Chelsea’s defence divided, Maddison’s finish was cool and collected – as he remained composed to slot the ball past Mendy.


Second half:

As the second half commenced, it was the home side who started the brighter team and very nearly found a third. Full back James Justin crept in at the far post and was found by Albrighton, but the defender’s header was diverted at the wrong side of the post.


Things nearly went from bad to worse for Chelsea, as Albrighton was involved once more to put the ball in the back of the net. Fortunately for Frank Lampard’s side, the linesman’s flag was correctly raised, as Leicester were ready to land another killer blow to a lacklustre Chelsea team.


It seemed that Leicester simply had Chelsea’s number, with The Blues just playing the game into The Foxes’ grasp. Every Chelsea attack left them vulnerable in defence, with Youri Tielemans coming close to wrapping up all three points for the home side, but for Mendy’s denial once again.


Rodgers’ side continued to hang on well, they defended comfortably whilst still managing to cause the visitors a variety of defensive problems. Chelsea introduced both Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech just after the hour mark – but their arrivals caused no immediate bother to the Leicester backline.


On the 80th minute the evergreen Jamie Vardy came close once again, with his bursting run being spotted by Timothy Castagne. The striker looked set to grab Leicester’s inevitable third, but he struggled with his touch to Chelsea’s relief.


It had been 80 minutes since Wilfred Ndidi’s opener, and Chelsea had finally got the ball into the back of the Leicester City net – only for the goal to be given offside.

A free kick won by Pulisic allowed Hakim Ziyech to put a problematic ball into the penalty are – which was met by Timo Werner to give Chelsea what would have been a glimmer of hope.


The decision looked to have been the correct one, with VAR confirming the decision to Leicester’s relief. Timo Werner looked to be offside by the tightest of margins, which will cause nothing but further frustration for Frank Lampard’s Chelsea.


After the whistle:

As the full-time whistle blew, there was confirmation for Leicester fans that they would be heading to the top of the Premier League having picked up 3 valuable points against an out of sorts Chelsea team. The victory also marked Brendan Rodgers first ever team against the London club, having now beaten all 34 Premier League teams that he has faced as manager.


For Frank Lampard and Chelsea, their loss tonight marks the fifth defeat that they have tasted in their last eight games. Although it may seem like worrying times right now at Stamford Bridge, The Blues will look to get back on track on Sunday afternoon, as they take on Championship side Luton in the fourth round of the FA Cup.


Final score:

Leicester 2-0 Chelsea

- (Ndidi, 6’)

- (Maddison, 41’)


Man of the match:

James Maddison (Leicester)


Line-ups:

Leicester: Schmeichel ©; Castagne, Evans, Fofana, Justin; Ndidi, Albrighton (77’), Tielemans, Maddison (76’), Barnes; Vardy (88’).

- Subs: Pérez (76’), Pereira (77’), Iheanacho (88’).


Chelsea: Mendy; James, Rüdiger, Silva, Chilwell; Kovačić, Mount (67’), Havertz (68’); Pulisic, Abraham, Hudson-Odoi.

- Subs: Ziyech (67’), Werner (68’).


Referee:

Craig Pawson

Possession:

Leicester (36%) vs Chelsea (64%)


Shots:

Leicester (8) vs Chelsea (9)


Shots on target:

Leicester (6) vs Chelsea (5)


Corners:

Leicester (6) vs Chelsea (3)


Fouls:

Leicester (7) vs Chelsea (16)

- (statistics via BBC Sport)


Match Highlights:

- (video via Sky Sports Football)

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