Brentford were again punished for squandering their chances as Leicester sealed a narrow 2-1 victory courtesy of a decisive strike from James Maddison in the Premier League.
For the second consecutive weekend, Brentford learnt the hard way that the Premier League seldom forgives wasted chances. They produced enough to overcome a sputtering Leicester but failed to convert them into goals and, instead, fell to Youri Tielemans’ sublime strike and a 73rd-minute tap-in from James Maddison.
Brentford were superior in nearly every department, but the Foxes held tight against Bees relentless attacks to sneak away all three points. Christian Norgaard went close with an overhead kick in the second minute, but Kasper Schmeichel matched the acrobatics and pulled off a decent save.
Ivan Toney had a goal disallowed due to being offside from Rico Henry’s low drive. The imposing striker soon found Bryan Mbeumo, whose effort flew just wide of Schmeichel’s goal as the Bees continued to dominate the proceedings. Leicester took the lead against the tempo through Tielemans. Henry cleared Maddison’s free-kick, but the ball dropped nicely for the Belgian, who blasted a long-range screamer into the top corner.
Toney was then denied in quick succession by Schmeichel after the interval, but Brentford grabbed a deserved equaliser on the hour mark when Mathias Jorgensen rose at the near post to meet Mathias Jensen’s in-swinging corner and head-flick it past Schmeichel.
Leicester took back the lead 15 minutes before the final whistle when Maddison blasted the tap-in past Raya after being set up by Patson Daka to secure a smash-and-grab win for the visitors. The result lifted the Foxes’ to 9th in the Premier League standings while Brentford dropped to 12th. After their momentum-shifting triumph, The Hard Tackle will now run the rule over Brendan Rodgers men.
Kasper Schmeichel: 6.5/10
In the first half, he made good saves to prevent Norgaard and Toney from scoring, and he also got away with a couple of tricky situations, most notably when he clashed with Jansson. His distribution wasn’t at par, but he was quick to react and played his part in the build-up to the second goal by releasing Iheanacho.
Daniel Amartey: 6/10
After efficiently containing Ronaldo the other week, Amartey was undone by Ivan Toney in the first half, as the Brentford striker was too swift and powerful. But he improved substantially in the second period and won all of his 50-50s with Bees’ forwards and some of his tackles drew chants from the crowd.
Jonny Evans: 7/10
Commanding display from the Leicester skipper. His presence is enough to improve Foxes defence multi-folds. Evans eased the intense pressure on Leicester with his intelligent game-reading and cleared his lines well. Marshalled the backline, and was a voice at the back. He completed a match-high ten clearances.
Caglar Soyuncu: 5/10
Mbeumo often gave him the burners because he was sloppy most of the time. Soyuncu is generally much better alongside Evans, but this was a disappointing performance from him. There were jittery clearances, wayward forward balls, and reckless challenges, one of which got him a booking. Was subsequently substituted with Rodgers reluctant to risk a sending-off.
Ricardo Pereira: 6/10
Poor defensively, Rico Henry caused him tremendous problems. The Bees’ left wing-back was twisting and turning him inside and out. But Pereira ultimately matched the strides of Henry to keep him quieter as the game went by, and on the ball, he showed composure despite being pressed and closed out by multiple Bees’ players.
Youri Tielemans: 8/10
Youri Tielemans vs Brentford by numbers:
90 minutes played
4 shots on target
40 acc. passes
63% pass rate
4 key passes
4 ground duels won
2 aerial duels won
— Stats Prince (@StatsPrince) October 24, 2021
Tielemans delivered two moments of sheer brilliance to illustrate why Rodgers considers him among Europe’s best midfielders. His goal was a tremendous strike, and his first-time ball through to Patson Daka sliced up the Brentford backline for the second. His performance was not without flaws, but those important moments made all the difference on the day.
Boubakary Soumare: 6/10
He was overrun in the first half as he battled to keep up with Brentford’s energetic midfield, but he grew in the second period and was steady, working hard in screening the backline and almost scored a goal.
Timothy Castagne: 6/10
He did his job as usual, despite not being able to push forwards to attack as much as he would have wanted owing to the lack of options to link up on the left flank.
James Maddison: 7/10
Finally, the vintage James Maddison is back in-form. He was slow initially in his first touches but soon found his song. He was gliding past defenders, demanding the ball, drawing fouls and getting shots away. He was set to be substituted with tired legs and conceding possession twice but then surged forward to tap in from Daka’s assist and netted his first goal since February.
Kelechi Iheanacho: 6.5/10
His first-touch was either ridiculously good or completely nonexistent, and his hold-up play was likewise hit-or-miss on the day. However, when he gets going, he’s quite productive, and he contributed to the second goal with a lovely layoff to Tielemans and created several opportunities for Daka. He hardly had a sniff alongside Vardy, but his understanding with Daka is one to relish in the upcoming matches.
Jamie Vardy: 5/10
It’s not uncommon for Vardy to be hardly engaged in the build-up, but only six touches in 45 minutes speaks volumes about how little impact he had on the pitch. He was rightly substituted at half-time. With Daka and Iheanacho looking decent as a pair up top, his place in the starting-XI comes under fire.
Patson Daka: 7/10
Patson Daka's last three games for Leicester across all competitions:
⚽️ vs. Man Utd
⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️ vs. Spartak Moscow
🅰️ vs. Brentford
He's only started one of them. 😅 pic.twitter.com/t0DADtemXS
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) October 24, 2021
Fresh from scoring five goals over two games, Daka didn’t moan about not starting and instead let his play do the talking. He made the impact Rodgers demanded from him after coming on from the bench. He stretched Brentford’s defensive line, pressing hard and then displaying a selfless side to his game by setting up Maddison for the winner. The substitute delivered an excellent performance.
Jannik Vestergaard: 5/10
Positioned himself well after coming on, he made several blocks to help Leicester survive the late pressure.
Ayoze Perez: 6/10
Worked hard off the ball and made good decisions, as well as showed decent close control to release the pressure off Leicester while nearly scoring with his only shot.