Manchester City sealed a third straight league win as they battled past Leicester City to earn a well-deserved 1-0 victory at King Power Stadium.
The game started on a high intense note, with both sides coming close to take the lead within the opening few minutes. Manchester City dominated the proceeding by controlling the lion’s share of possession, while Leicester looked to cause problems through fast-counters.
The Cityzens kept knocking on the doors for much of the first half and had several chances to score, only for some incredible blocks from the Leicester defence to keep things at 0-0 going into halftime. The Foxes came out blazing after the break. Harvey Barnes’ header struck against the crossbar barely a couple of minutes in, and shortly after, Jamie Vardy skipped past Ederson to put the ball into the back of the net, only to have the strike ruled out for offside.
The deadlock was finally broken at the hour-mark when Bernardo Silva netted from close range to give the visitors the lead. Jack Grealish attacked near the byline before setting up Joao Cancelo, whose powerful low drive from outside the box was wildly deflected by Soyuncu into the path of Silva, who made no mistake in wonderfully clipping the loose ball past Kasper Schmeichel.
The Foxes looked lively after the substitutions, but Manchester City held firm thanks to Ederson and their backline clearing the lines. It was an entertaining game with both sides playing fast, free-flowing football with both sets of keepers called into action many times. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over both sets of players after an engaging contest on Saturday.
Kasper Schmeichel: 7/10
He was superb in the first half, made numerous saves, showcasing his quick reaction and fine positioning. His distribution degraded in the second half to put his side in trouble at times.
Timothy Castagne: 6.5/10
He was assigned the job to keep Grealish quite on the right-flank, effectively reducing his overall impact on the game, He did decent defensively but unlike Ricardo, he didn’t offer much of an attacking threat.
Caglar Soyuncu: 7/10
He made no obvious errors; the ricochet leading to the goal was unfortunate. He was beaten too easily on occasions, but he was astute with his output; he completed three tackles, one interception, seven clearances and three shots blocked.
Jannik Vestergaard: 7/10
He was given the start ahead of Jonny Evans and didn’t disappoint. Had a solid full-debut, his passing was decent, and he positioned himself well to avoid calamities in defence. Threw his body on the line to make some sensational blocks.
🇩🇰 Jannik Vestergaard 🆚 M. City 🛢️
61 Minutes Played
88% Pass Accuracy (22)
80% Long Ball Accuracy (4)
4 Duels Won
0 Goals Conceded#LCFC
A solid 60 mins back from injury 💪 pic.twitter.com/LeSVvLVl6L
— 𝙇𝘾𝙁𝘾_𝙎𝙋 (@LCFCshitposting) September 11, 2021
Ryan Bertrand: 6/10
Made some key blocks but was guilty of getting sucked in a fair few times, providing Jesus with a lot of space in behind to exploit. He couldn’t create a good partnership with Barnes on the left-flank.
Wilfred Ndidi: 6.5/10
Struggled early on but quickly improved to impose his physicality; he won the ball back nicely for Jamie Vardy’s disallowed goal. He ended with three tackles, two interceptions and two dribbles, marking a decent showing in the centre of the park.
Youri Tielemans: 6/10
Played some nice forward passes and orchestrated Leicester’s attacks, but uncharacteristically, his passing was poor on the day; he made some poor passes resulting in a loss of possession.
Marc Albrighton: 5/10
Provided the much-needed passing option for Tielemans out-wide but had to defend hard, helping out Castagne. He lacked the pace and skill to trouble the Man City defence.
James Maddison: 5/10
Looked lively in the first half, showing nice passes and dribbling but went anonymous in the second half. He contributed nothing off the ball.
Harvey Barnes: 6/10
He was a threat at the back post, getting into some interesting positions, but his direct movements were predictable and easily dealt with by Kyle Walker.
Jamie Vardy: 6.5/10
Vardy made some really good runs down the channels and in-between the opposition defence and was nearly rewarded with a goal but was unfortunate to see his goal get chalked off due to offside. His sharp movement and incisive runs created problems for Man City and he also laid a couple of good chances for Barnes.
— Jamie Vardy (@vardy7) September 11, 2021
Jonny Evans: 6/10
Looked rusty after coming back from the injury, will get back to usual soon.
Kelechi Iheanacho: 6.5/10
Made an immediate influence, providing an option, displaying strength, good hold-up play in the box, and laying the groundwork for Ademola Lookman’s huge opportunity. He has given Rodgers’ a selection headache for next weekend.
Ademola Lookman: 7/10
A vibrant debut for the winger, he was eager to get on the ball and displayed some clever movements. He would have scored late on if Ederson hadn’t quickly rushed off his line.
Ederson Moraes: 7.5/10
Ederson has kept 15 clean sheets in 2021, more than any other Premier League goalkeeper.
Scott Carson will have to wait. 😉 pic.twitter.com/TbSKPj2Ken
— William Hill (@WilliamHill) September 11, 2021
Thankfully the common sense prevailed, and Brazilian players’ were allowed to play, and one of them was City goalkeeper Ederson who put a MOTM performance for his side. He had nothing much to do in the first half but was largely called upon in the second half, he crucially denied Iheanacho and Lookman to make sure City leave the King Power with all three points.
Kyle Walker: 7/10
He didn’t advance much and was largely engaged with Barnes, and the strategy worked as City nullified Leicester’s attacks from the right-hand side. He also had 2 shots to show for his attacking intent.
Ruben Dias: 7/10
The Portuguese was good in possession and was dominant enough aerially. He defended well and kept Jamie Vardy at bay except for that disallowed goal when Vardy got the better of him.
Aymeric Laporte: 7.5/10
He was fairly aggressive with his defending and appeared to be back at his best. City have kept three consecutive clean sheets in Laporte’s three outings this season, and the Spaniard looks to have cemented his spot as Dias’ partner.
Joao Cancelo: 7/10
He combined well with Grealish and Silva, which was the creative powerhouse in this game. His ball-carrying ability is threatening and led to several chances; was involved in Silva’s goal.
He struggled to impose himself in the centre of the park and was outmuscled by Ndidi and Tielemans but read the situation well to shift a little wide to have more effect on the game.
Ilkay Gundogan: 8/10
No player had more shots (6) or created more chances (4) than Ilkay Gündogan against Leicester.
No goal or assist to show for it though. 😩 pic.twitter.com/5DYR5dQipi
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) September 11, 2021
He was brilliant on the day, outwitted Leicester’s press, and created many chances from midfield. He drove the ball forward very well and dictated the play for large parts. A classy display from the stand-in Manchester City captain.
Bernardo Silva: 8/10
Worked tirelessly throughout the game and was clearly the best player for the Sky Blues in the first half; the Portuguese created a flurry of chances that did not result in a goal. Silva subsequently scored in the 62nd minute, capitalizing on a lucky bounce in the box after Cancelo’s shot.
Jack Grealish: 7/10
He linked up extremely well with his new teammates, and the combination with Bernardo Silva was the junction from where a lot of attacks came from. His flair and dribbling caused Leicester plenty of problems.
Perfect birthday present 🥳 another 3 points ✅💙 pic.twitter.com/JD4xwnc4jA
— Jack Grealish (@JackGrealish) September 11, 2021
Gabriel Jesus: 7/10
The Brazilian connected play nicely on the right flank and worked hard off the ball; he has been a revelation out wide and is enjoying the change.
Ferran Torres: 6/10
The Spanish forward led City’s frontline for the fifth time in a row, made sharp attacking movements, and should have buried it past Schmeichel after being laid by a perfectly weighted pass from Gundogan.
Raheem Sterling: 6/10
He came on for Ferran Torres at the 64th minute, showed impressive movement but had to work hard off the ball to preserve the lead.