Leicester hit five at Stoke to extend lead at top

by 24britishtvFeb. 3, 2024, 6 p.m. 21
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Last updated on .From the section Championship

Leicester City extended their lead at the top of the Championship to 11 points as they eased to a 5-0 win at Stoke City.

Daka got a third from the penalty spot after a foul on Wout Faes.

Jamie Vardy added a fourth seven minutes later as he got on the end of a James Justin cross before the former England striker scored a stoppage-time penalty to complete the rout.

The loss drops Stoke to 20th in the Championship - four points and two places above the relegation zone.

It is the first time in Stoke boss Steven Schumacher's managerial career that he has lost three successive games and it is his heaviest defeat as a manager since his Plymouth Argyle side were beaten 4-0 at Leicester in December.

Leicester controlled the opening part of the game as Abdul Fatawu - recalled after a three-game ban - blasted wide before Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall's header from a 14th-minute Fatatwu cross was tipped over by Jack Bonham.

Leicester went ahead after some great passing led to Dewsbury-Hall standing up a cross into the area which Fatawu headed back across goal for Daka to tap in unmarked.

Three minutes later the game was over as Ben Wilmot deflected McAteer's shot from outside the box to leave Bonham wrongfooted.

Stoke's Dutch deadline-day signing Million Manhoef had to watch from the stands as he waited for his work permit to come through, but fellow late signing Niall Ennis came on at half-time as Schumacher tried to shake things up with a double change.

Stoke made more changes but they had little effect as Leicester increased their lead when Jordan Thompson upended Faes and Daka sent Bonham the wrong way from the penalty spot.

Leicester boss Enzo Maresca sent on Vardy and Justin with 20 minutes left, and three minutes later the pair combined as Vardy blasted in his ninth of the season.

The hosts had their best chance moments later when Mads Hermansen superbly stopped Bae Jun-Ho's close-range effort before Justin cleared Ben Wilmot's follow-up off the line - although many Stoke fans failed to see it having already left after going 4-0 down.

Those that stayed to the end had little to cheer as Michael Rose brought down Dewsbury-Hall in stoppage time for a penalty kick and Vardy took his tally into double figures with almost the final kick of the game.

"I'm happy because we won the game. We scored five goals and a clean sheet finally - many times we were close but conceded a goal at the end.

"I'm very happy with the first half an hour where I thought the team was unbelievable, played very well in the way we want to play creating chances.

"There are many things to improve, but when you play in the way we played today we are very happy.

"Probably the reason why today we played so well is because they played in the way we expected."

"We expected it to be a tough game because we're playing a team that's shown why they're top of the league.

"What we wanted though was to make it more difficult for them, but in all honesty it was too easy.

"The two goals that we conceded in the first half were really poor goals from our point of view when we were in comfortable possession of the ball and we lose it twice that results in goals.

"Then we had a mountain to climb, so even the third goal when their defender runs through half the team, it's just not good enough and too easy to play against, so a difficult day."

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