Aston Villa 1-4 Leicester
Leicester City claimed a club record eighth-straight top-flight win as they punished a lacklustre Aston Villa to claim a 4-1 win at Villa Park.
With the fixtures coming thick and fast, both managers made changes from their midweek outings, the Foxes’ alterations the most striking, Brendan Rodgers’ tweaking his shape to match Villa’s 4-3-3.
The game started at a frantic pace, Tom Heaton making a sharp save after a melee in the Villans’ box, while Anwar El Ghazi struck the bar from six yards out for the hosts when it looked easier to score.
Leicester took the lead on 20 minutes and it was Jamie Vardy who netted for the eighth game in a row. The 32-year-old latched onto Kelechi Iheanacho’s ball and bundled home but the real talking point was Tyrone Mings’ inability to affect the play, having somehow been allowed to stay on despite being clearly injured with a hamstring pull.
The Foxes continued to push and after some near misses, Iheanacho doubled the lead, getting the last touch off James Maddison’s cross, although Ezri Konsa appeared the man who had initially deflected towards goal.
A 2-0 advantage would have been fair at half-time but Jack Grealish provided a lifeline for the home side, driving home with almost the final kick of the first 45.
That led to promise of a blockbuster second half but Leicester wrapped the game up on 49 minutes, Jonny Evans guiding a wonderful header home, giving Heaton no chance in the goal.
Villa’s composure was by now on the wane with petulant fouls and tactical indiscipline damaging their chances and inevitably they were punished again with a quarter of an hour to go.
A long ball by Ricardo Pereira was elegantly chipped on by Dennis Praet and Vardy sprinted clear to finish well past Heaton.
The game petered out and Leicester were happy to claim a club record eighth top-flight goal in a row.
In hindsight, if El Ghazi had scored and Mings had been withdrawn, it could have been a different story but the fact is they have now won just one of their last six games and appear in relegation trouble.