James Maddison and Kelechi Iheanacho shone even as Leicester fell to a massive 6-3 loss away to Manchester City.
City go six points clear at the top of the Premier League after their ninth league win in a row.
Pep Guardiola’s men were 4-0 up after 25 minutes and the game seemed absolutely dead and buried. After their EFL Cup collapse at Anfield, it looked like yet more misery for the injury-hit Foxes.
But James Maddison and Kelechi Iheanacho, just about the only star men still available to Brendan Rodgers, set about giving Leicester life in a game where they seemed to be dead and buried.
The turnaround began instantly, with Leicester’s counter-attack becoming more potent and managing to rip through the flimsy Rodri-less City midfield and get at the defence. However they could never find the final pass and the half ended 4-0.
After the break, however, Leicester went to work. First James Maddison pulled one back with a wonderful finish to cap a superb counter and give Leicester a glimmer of a chance.
Less than five minutes later, Maddison danced away from City challenges in midfield and fed Iheanacho who split the City defence wonderfully, finding Ademola Lookman who made it 4-2.
Six minutes after that, Maddison was in space on the edge of the box and let rip with such a ferocious shot that Ederson could only palm it onto the bar. As the ball fell from the sky, who else but Iheanacho showed up to slam home and make it 4-3.
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At this time a comeback felt inevitable. But of course, Manchester City were driven to up their own intensity and did so, bagging two goals from corners (making it 13 conceded by Leicester from set-pieces so far this season) to kill off the Foxes’ comeback.
So the game ended with City dominant and Leicester once again licking their wounds. But unlike Anfield where they threw away a massive lead, here they may have suffered, but they showed tremendous heart and fight and four about an hour were the equals of Man City.
Maddison and Iheanacho showed that even without Jamie Vardy or Patson Daka or Harvey Barnes, and even with Youri Tielemans being less than useless, Leicester have two superstars they can rely on. They nearly turned things around at a stadium where no visiting side has score more than one goal all season.
Leicester City have scored as many goals in the first 20 minutes of the second half (3) as every other team has managed against Man City at the Etihad so far this season. 🍿
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) December 26, 2021
Iheanacho ended the game with 1 goal, 2 assists and 3 shots, all of which were on target. The Seniorman was in superb form as he linked play and brought the best out of his team-mates. Meanwhile Maddison created 3 chances, completed 3/3 take-ons, won 3 fouls and of course scored the first goal of the comeback.
Looking forward to Leicester’s rematch with Liverpool, the Foxes will no doubt be fearful of a fully-rested firestorm from Jurgen Klopp’s full-strength side, especially given their own troubles defending set-pieces. However the shining performances of James Maddison (who now has three goals in his last three games and six in his last eight; he is a man in form) and Kelechi Iheanacho will give him hope that somehow Leicester could get a late Christmas Miracle to steal something at the King Power.