Brendan Rodgers says Leicester win was as easy as when he won 6-0 at Newcastle United
Brendan Rodgers won’t have many easier victories this season.
His Leicester side strolling past a dismal Newcastle United side who were a distant second best even before the goals and then the injuries came along.
This is two clubs with very different ideas about ambition and it massively showed on the pitch on Wednesday.
Brendan Rodgers visited St James Park on 27 April 2013 with Liverpool and beat Alan Pardew’s side 6-0, the Leicester boss believes yesterday was just a dominant performance with only the extra goals missing.
It couldn’t have been easier as the Foxes just sat back and knocked the ball about, Newcastle allowing them total domination from the very first whistle.
In many ways Newcastle got lucky, Jamie Vardy would have surely filled his boots if he hadn’t been injured. Whilst down to 10 men gave Steve Bruce the perfect excuse not to try and attack at all despite being 2-0 down, if United had still had 11 men then they would have been duty bound surely for even Steve Bruce have to try and attack, in which case Newcastle would surely have been cut to ribbons in the second half and the final scoreline more like that 6-0 one.
Ironically, when Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool were back at Newcastle in 2014, they lost 1-0 to NUFC 19 months later, a certain Ayoze Perez getting the only goal of the game.
In his first five months at Leicester, Ayoze Perez has already beaten Newcastle three times and finds himself second top of the Premier League and on the brink of a League Cup final. Leicester having played a full strength team at St James Park when winning that second round game whilst Steve Bruce made seven changes despite promising that the cups would have the same importance as the league.
Leicester aren’t doing anything that is revolutionary, simply trying to be as ambitious as they can be, doing their best in the transfer market and looking to attract the highest quality manager they can, then backing his judgement on transfers.
Then we have Newcastle United…
“I remember coming here before with Liverpool and we won 6-0 and played very well.
“We have come here today with equally as good a performance, not scored the goals, but certainly with the control in the game and the quality in our game, played very, very well.
“But we can play better.
“We will improve the longer we work together because it has only been 10 months or so.
“The potential in the group really excites me but we have to keep that consistency and that hunger to want to be better.
“We played very well, particularly in the first half.
“We really attacked the game when we had the ball and when we didn’t have the ball, that led to two really good opportunities for us.
“The first goal, we press it, Ayoze Perez anticipates it really well, cuts it out and then shows great skill to finish.
“The second goal as well, we press it, win it back, then it’s a great bit of individual quality from James (Maddison) to score.
“I thought we were well deserving of that in the first half.
“Unfortunately for Steve (Bruce) and Newcastle they lose the player (Fabian Schar) at the beginning of the half (with NUFC down to 10 men after using all three subs) but then I was really pleased with our game idea then, because we were happy to have the ball, work them side to side and wait for more openings.”
Stats (half-time stats in brackets) from BBC Sport:
Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 (Newcastle 0 Leicester 2) – Wednesday 1 January 3pm
Perez 36, Maddison 39, Choudhury 87
Possession was Leicester 77% (71%), Newcastle 23% (29%)
Total shots were Leicester 16 (9), Newcastle 5 (4)
Shots on target were Leicester 9 (5), Newcastle 2 (2)
Corners were Leicester 5 (4), Newcastle 4 (3)
Crowd: 52,178 (3,000 Leicester and 10,000 free NUFC season ticket holders, although a massive number of empty seats all around St James Park)
Referee: Martin Atkinson
Newcastle team v Leicester:
Dubravka, Manquillo (Krafth 45+3), Schar (forced off on 51 minutes and NUFC down to 10 men), Lejeune, Fernandez, Willems (Yedlin 45), Hayden, Shelvey (Sean Longstaff 46), Almiron, Muto, Joelinton
Darlow, Atsu, Carroll, Gayle
(Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Wednesday’s defeat – Read HERE)
(Watch official match highlights HERE)
(Steve Bruce confirms Newcastle United now have 11 injured after 6 additions – Read HERE)
(Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 – Match ratings and comments on all NUFC players – Read HERE)
(Newcastle 0 Leicester 3 – Thousands of empty seats as injuries save Steve Bruce from proper hammering – Read HERE)
(Today was the first time I have ever felt sorry for Steve Bruce and then I woke up – Read HERE)
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