Match report: Leicester City 2-2 Manchester United
The points were shared at the King Power Stadium, where the Boxing Day schedule got off to a very entertaining start. Paul Doyle was there …
Brendan Rodgers speaks …
“I thought it was a really good game,” the Leicester manager tells BT Sport. “Two attacking teams … I thought our counter-pressing was really good. I thought we were very impressive in the first half. Second half we had to defend a little it more. We had lots of good moments when we were playing through … maybe lacked our final pass.
“We went 2-1 behind and it’s perhaps the thing we’ve been talking about – we had our enthusiasm and our confidence and it really showed the mentality of our team.
On Jamie Vardy being quiet: “That’s his game … his concentration level. He’s got that brain for football. He always knows where to be. Over the course of the first half I thought we were the better team.”
On having another game in 48 hours: “We’re in tomorrow, we’ll recover, see where we’re at and pick a team.”
Ole Gunnar Solskjær speaks …
“We had loads of big chances and we could have finished it off, but Leicester are a dangerous side,” says the Man United manager, in his chat with Des. “Marcus’s first chance was a glorious one but it was just one of those things. Both their goals should have been closed down quicker – you always look at goals conceded and think you should have done better. We’ve got a game in three days … an extra recovery day which we’ll use wisely.”
Jamie Vardy speaks …
“I don’t think I’ll get that goal,” says the man who may or may not have scored Leicester’s equaliser in an interview with BT Sport’s suave, sophisticated and dishy touchline reporter Des Kelly. “I think it might have been going wide but at the end of the day it’s got us a point that I thought we thoroughly deserved.
“It is all about patience,” he adds. “You can’t score with every single attack. It’s about being patient, keeping the ball, making sure we get into the best scoring opportunity possible and me being in as postiion to get on the end of a cross at the end of it. We’re happy with that.”
Full time: Leicester City 2-2 Manchester United
Peep! Peep! Peeeeeeeep! A very entertaining game ends at the King Power Stadium with the sides sharing the points. Both teams will feel they should have won, a state of affairs that suggests a draw was probably fair.
90+2 min: Leicester win a free-kick wide on the right. The ball’s swung in, Pogba clears it and it comes back quickly. Ayoze Perez has his blushes spared by being flagged for offside when he misses what looks like a golden opportunity to win the game for the hosts.
90+1 min: In the blue corner, Maddison goes down holding his knee, gets a bit of TLC and is back on his feet again.
89 min: Marcus Rashford goes down with what looks like a groin injury – a six-weeker, in this non-doctor’s expert medical opinion. Manchester United have used all their subs, so he stays on for now.
87 min: Replays show Vardy needed a little help from Axel Tunazebe to equalise. His finish was less than crisp and took a deflection off the substitute’s knee on its way goalwards.
GOAL! Leicester City 2-2 Manchester United (Vardy 85)
He’s been quiet … too damned quiet. Jamie Vardy guides the ball past De Gea, converting a cross from Ayoze Perez, who is on as a sub.
84 min: Already on a yellow card, Bruno courts disaster with a late tackle on Jonny Evans … we’ll get back to this.
80 min: Edinson Cavani doesn’t take long to make an impact, playing Fernandes in behind with a nicely weighted pass. I think it was Jonny Evans playing Fernandes onside as he ran on to the pass on the edge of the Leicester penalty area before stroking the ball home.
GOAL! Leicester 1-2 Manchester United (Fernades 79)
Well colour me pink and call me Mystic Baz! Bruno Fernandes tucks the ball into the bottom corner after being teed up by Cavani.
76 min: No goals in the second half yet, despite my promises earlier. Judging by the ebb and flow of the game, I reckon we’ll get a winner.
74 min: James Justin is on the deck holding his jaw after being caught in the kisser by a flailing Paul Pogba elbow. It was accidental as they contested a high ball. Manchester United substitution: Edinson Cavani on for Anthony Martial.
72 min: A blisteringly fast Leicester City counter-attack ends with Marc Albrighton sending in a cross that’s this much too high for the leaping Jamie Vardy. The winger signals his apology.
70 min: Free-kick for United, wide on the left about 35 yards from goal. Luke Shaw curls an outsawinger towards the far post, where Harry Maguire rises highest and heads over. He’s penalised for grappling Wesley Fofana, using the Leicester defender for leverage.
68 min: Jonny Evans makes a crucial interception for Leicester, stretching to intercept a Bruno Fernandes cross arrowing towards Marcus Rashford with his head.
65 min: Harvey Barnes and Jamie Vardy link up down the inside left, before Barnes squares the ball for Maddison. It’s tantalisingly out of reach for the midfielder.
64 min: Luke Shawe is penalised for laying hands on the lower lumbar region of Marc Albrighton between the right edge of the United penalty area and the touchlione. That’s a very soft free-kick.
61 min: Martial runs on to a ball from deep from Rashford and slots the ball into the bottom right-hand corner, only for the linesman to rule his effort out for offside. It was very tight, but the decision was correct.
59 min: An outstanding save from Kasper Schmeichel, who gets a strong right hand on a Marcus Rashford shot after the United man had been put through on goal and fired from 10 yards or thereabouts.
55 min: Manchester United threaten to embark on a counter-attack but James Maddison puts an illegal stop to Bruno’s gallop. Yellow card. United substitution from a minute or so ago: Paul Pogba on for Dan James.
53 min: Maddison tries to curl the ball over the wall into the top left-hand corner, but Rashford jumps and puts it out for a corner. Nothing comes of the set piece.
52 min: Leicester win a free-kick for hand ball, after a Fred backpass hits Bailly’s outstretched arm. It’s just on the edge of the penalty area, almost dead centre in prime Maddison real estate.
51 min: No chances of note for either side in the early stages of the second half but Leicester are bossing possession. Paul Pogba is about to come on for United.
49 min: Youri Tielemans hoists the ball into the Manchester United penalty area from the right, but Harry Maguire clears. United embark on a galloping counter-attack with a two-on-two but if comes to nothing.
47 min: From deep, Bruno Fernandes plays the ball wide to Marcus Rashford, who is dispossessed by a well-timed tackle from the very impressive James Justin.
Second half: Leicester City 1-1 Manchester United
46 min: Leicester get proceedings under way with no changes in personnel on either side. I’d put the farm on there being more goals in this game, if I had a farm. Right now I couldn’t tell you who’ll get them … but I will at some point.
Half-time: Leicester City 1-1 Manchester United
A fairly entertaining 45 minutes is brough to a halt by Mike Dean, with the sides level. United opened the scoring, with Marcus Rashford making up for his awful miss in the opening seconds. Harvey Barnes drew Leicester level and on the balance of play, the scoreline is probably fair.
45+1 min: Bruno Fernandes gets booked for a foul on Jonny Evans. He looks aggrieved, I’d need to see it again before deciding whether or not I feel his pain.
44 min: The camera cuts to the United bench, where Ole has his arms folded tightly to ward off the cold, his chin entrenched deep in his padded jacket.