Leicester close in on safety with win over Stoke City
Leicester 2 - 0 Stoke City

Leicester close in on safety with win over Stoke City

02/04/2017

Leicester edged closer to certain Premier League safety as boss Craig Shakespeare entered the record books after a routine win over Stoke.

Wilfred Ndidi and Jamie Vardy handed the Foxes a 2-0 victory over a subdued Stoke side who rarely threatened to upset the home side's momentum.

It was Leicester's fifth straight win in all competitions since Claudio Ranieri was sacked and meant Shakespeare became the first English manager to win his first four Premier League games.

He joined Guus Hiddink, Jose Mourinho, Pep Guardiola and Carlo Ancelotti in having a 100 per cent record after four outings.

Shakespeare has now guided last season's shock champions nine points clear of the relegation zone and into the Champions League quarter-finals.

He also has them back to their vibrant best with hapless Stoke, who remain ninth, unable to cope and the Foxes now sit just three points behind them.

Leicester set an early tone when Yohan Benalouane - in his first league appearance at the King Power Stadium since the opening day of last season - dragged wide.

The Foxes bossed possession with the visitors trying to remain compact but Stoke were indebted to Erik Pieters after 18 minutes.

Ryan Shawcross poleaxed Demarai Gray and, from Christian Fuchs' free-kick, Pieters nodded Robert Huth's goalbound header away and Vardy missed the follow-up.

Gray then drilled wide but the Foxes got the goal their early domination deserved after 25 minutes with Ndidi's first Premier League strike.

The midfielder collected Danny Simpson's simple pass before advancing and unleashing an unstoppable 25-yard drive into the top corner.

As an attacking force Stoke were non-existent and going behind left them with a mountain to climb, with Saido Berahino anonymous and Marko Arnautovic nullified.

Gray, a constant danger, forced Glen Johnson to deflect his effort over before Lee Grant turned Mahrez's shot wide nine minutes before the break.

In between, Berahino finally reminded everyone he was on the pitch but his scuffed shot was gathered by the under-worked Kasper Schmeichel.

And Leicester extinguished any hopes of a second-half Stoke revival just 76 seconds after the re-start.

Again, it was too easy for the Foxes as Simpson collected his second assist of the afternoon, swinging in a deep cross which Vardy met with a clinical volley past Grant.

It was the striker's fifth goal in his last six club games, with the 30-year-old revitalised since February's exit of former manager Claudio Ranieri.

Shinji Okazaki tested Grant before the goalkeeper produced a fine block to prevent Mahrez making it 3-0 after 64 minutes.

There was no sign of a comeback from Stoke, with Leicester afforded the luxury of taking Vardy off early, even if Peter Crouch side-footed wide with 24 minutes left.

Mahrez nearly added a third but shot wide and Gray almost capped an excellent display when Grant tipped his late effort around the post.

Crouch then headed wide with a minute left and was denied by Schmeichel in stoppage time.

Related news

Manchester City crash out of FA Cup against Wigan

Manchester City crash out of FA Cup against Wigan

Manchester City's quadruple trophy bid was sensationally derailed by a shocking 1-0 defeat at third-division Wigan in the FA Cup fifth round on Monday.

Rochdale score in added time to draw with Spurs, force FA Cup replay

Rochdale score in added time to draw with Spurs, force FA Cup replay

Substitute Steve Davies earned Rochdale an FA Cup fifth-round replay at Wembley Stadium with his remarkable stoppage-time equaliser against Tottenham Hotspur at Spotland.

Man United see off Huddersfield thanks to Romelu Lukaku brace

Man United see off Huddersfield thanks to Romelu Lukaku brace

Manchester United overcame the video assistant referee's controversial intervention and reached the FA Cup quarterfinals thanks to Romelu Lukaku's brace at Huddersfield.

Willian helps Chelsea glide past Hull into FA Cup quarters

Willian helps Chelsea glide past Hull into FA Cup quarters

Willian dispatched two inch-perfect finishes as Chelsea cruised past Hull 4-0 and into the FA Cup quarter-finals.

Vardy goal gets Leicester past Sheffield United, into FA Cup quarters

Vardy goal gets Leicester past Sheffield United, into FA Cup quarters

Sheffield Wednesday fan Jamie Vardy put the Blades to the sword as Leicester knocked Sheffield United out of the FA Cup.

Hazard brace gives Chelsea win over West Brom

Hazard brace gives Chelsea win over West Brom

Chelsea eased the growing pressure on Antonio Conte and returned to the Premier League's top four with a convincing 3-0 win over West Brom.

Liverpool cruise to win at Southampton to return to third place

Liverpool cruise to win at Southampton to return to third place

Liverpool moved back above Tottenham and into third place in the Premier League table as two first-half goals gave them a routine 2-0 victory at struggling Southampton.

Newcastle boost survival hopes with victory over Manchester United

Newcastle boost survival hopes with victory over Manchester United

Matt Ritchie scored a second-half winner for Newcastle as they lifted themselves out of the relegation places with a 1-0 victory over Manchester United at St James' Park.

Sergio Aguero scores four as Man City cruise to win over Leicester

Sergio Aguero scores four as Man City cruise to win over Leicester

Sergio Aguero scored four times as Manchester City extended their Premier League lead to 16 points with a 5-1 demolition of Leicester at the Etihad Stadium.

RELATED NEWS

Manchester City crash out of FA Cup against Wigan
Wigan 1 - 0 Manchester City

Manchester City crash out of FA Cup against Wigan

Manchester City's quadruple trophy bid was sensationally derailed by a shocking 1-0 defeat at third-division Wigan in the FA Cup fifth round on Monday.

Rochdale score in added time to draw with Spurs, force FA Cup replay
Rochdale 2 - 2 Tottenham Hotspur

Rochdale score in added time to draw with Spurs, force FA Cup replay

Substitute Steve Davies earned Rochdale an FA Cup fifth-round replay at Wembley Stadium with his remarkable stoppage-time equaliser against Tottenham Hotspur at Spotland.

Man United see off Huddersfield thanks to Romelu Lukaku brace
Huddersfield 0 - 2 Man United

Man United see off Huddersfield thanks to Romelu Lukaku brace

Manchester United overcame the video assistant referee's controversial intervention and reached the FA Cup quarterfinals thanks to Romelu Lukaku's brace at Huddersfield.

Willian helps Chelsea glide past Hull into FA Cup quarters
Chelsea 4 - 0 Hull

Willian helps Chelsea glide past Hull into FA Cup quarters

Willian dispatched two inch-perfect finishes as Chelsea cruised past Hull 4-0 and into the FA Cup quarter-finals.

Vardy goal gets Leicester past Sheffield United, into FA Cup quarters
Leicester 1 - 0 Sheffield United

Vardy goal gets Leicester past Sheffield United, into FA Cup quarters

Sheffield Wednesday fan Jamie Vardy put the Blades to the sword as Leicester knocked Sheffield United out of the FA Cup.

Hazard brace gives Chelsea win over West Brom
Chelsea 3 - 0 West Brom

Hazard brace gives Chelsea win over West Brom

Chelsea eased the growing pressure on Antonio Conte and returned to the Premier League's top four with a convincing 3-0 win over West Brom.

Liverpool cruise to win at Southampton to return to third place
Southampton 0 - 2 Liverpool

Liverpool cruise to win at Southampton to return to third place

Liverpool moved back above Tottenham and into third place in the Premier League table as two first-half goals gave them a routine 2-0 victory at struggling Southampton.

Newcastle boost survival hopes with victory over Manchester United
Newcastle 1 - 0 Manchester United

Newcastle boost survival hopes with victory over Manchester United

Matt Ritchie scored a second-half winner for Newcastle as they lifted themselves out of the relegation places with a 1-0 victory over Manchester United at St James' Park.

Sergio Aguero scores four as Man City cruise to win over Leicester
Man City 5 - 1 Leicester

Sergio Aguero scores four as Man City cruise to win over Leicester

Sergio Aguero scored four times as Manchester City extended their Premier League lead to 16 points with a 5-1 demolition of Leicester at the Etihad Stadium.

22/02/2018
08:00 | 2018 Winter Olympics
12:30 | Karolina Pliskova v Angelique Kerber - WTA Dubai
13:00 | ATP 250 - Marseille
14:00 | WTA - Dubai
16:00 | Caroline Garcia v Garbine Muguruza - WTA Dubai
17:00 | Lokomotiv Moskva - Nice
18:00 | ATP 500 - Rio Open
19:00 | Sporting - Astana
19:00 | Atletico Madrid - Copenhagen
19:00 | Dynamo Kyiv - AEK Athens
19:00 | Zenit - Celtic
19:00 | RB Leipzig - Napoli
19:00 | Villarreal - Olympique Lyon
19:00 | Viktoria Plzen - Partizan
19:00 | Lazio - FCSB
21:00 | Marin Cilic v Gael Monfils - ATP 500 - Rio Open
21:05 | Atalanta - Borussia Dortmund
21:05 | Athletic Bilbao - Spartak Moskva
21:05 | Salzburg - Real Sociedad
21:05 | Milan - Ludogorets
21:05 | Arsenal - Ostersunds FK
21:05 | Sporting Braga - Olympique Marseille
22:30 | Pablo Andujar v Dominic Thiem - ATP 500 - Rio Open
23/02/2018
02:00 | Frances Tiafoe v Juan Martin Del Potro - ATP 250 - Delray Beach
08:00 | 2018 Winter Olympics
13:00 | ATP 250 - Marseille
14:00 | WTA - Dubai
18:00 | ATP 500 - Rio Open
24/02/2018
08:00 | 2018 Winter Olympics
13:00 | ATP 250 - Marseille
13:30 | Leicester City - Stoke City
14:00 | WTA - Dubai
15:30 | Bayern Munich - Hertha BSC
16:00 | Liverpool - West Ham United
16:15 | Real Madrid - Alaves
17:00 | Toulouse - Monaco
18:00 | ATP 500 - Rio Open
18:30 | Watford - Everton
20:45 | Inter Milan - Benevento
20:45 | Barcelona - Girona
25/02/2018
08:00 | 2018 Winter Olympics
12:00 | Villarreal - Getafe
13:00 | ATP 250 - Marseille
14:00 | WTA - Dubai
15:00 | Bordeaux - Nice
15:00 | Sassuolo - Lazio
15:05 | Manchester United - Chelsea
15:30 | Bayer Leverkusen - Schalke 04
17:00 | Olympique Lyon - Saint-Etienne
17:30 | Arsenal - Manchester City - Carabao Cup Final
18:00 | Juventus - Atalanta
18:00 | ATP 500 - Rio Open
18:30 | Valencia - Real Sociedad
20:45 | Sevilla - Atletico Madrid
20:45 | Roma - Milan
21:00 | PSG - Olympique Marseille
DERBY OF THE WEEK
Manchester United - Chelsea
Derby of the week
15:05
25/02/2018
Derby of the week
W 2.00    
   W 3.80
The odds are correct at the time of publishing
02-15-2018 07:00 and are subject to change
Football Live Scores
Tennis Live Scores