A great Friday afternoon, lovely weather here “over the sea” and a great “sunset” in Leicester. The team was as expected and only one absentee from the first team, Wilfred Ndidi. Brendan Rodgers stepping up his preparations with a team well settled. The space after Harry Maguire was well covered by an impressive Caglar Soyuncu.
Leicester City last played Atalanta as far back as 1972. This was the Texaco Cup, a two tied affair, ending in a 5-3 Atalanta win in Bergamo, and at Filbert Street, Leicester City hammered Atalanta 6-0.
This time Leicester City started the game well, but had to see Atalanta having a bit of ball possession in the first half. After a while Leicester City managed to take the command in the first half and had a number of good opportunities, but none that I would call clear cuts.
A long kick from Kasper Schmeichel found Ayoze Perez, and he was close to getting controll, but he never came clear, that might have been the best opportunity. Jamie Vardy was kept quiet by the Atalanta defenders.
Leicester City came out in the 2nd half with an unchanged team, and with a few changes in the Atalanta set up, Rodgers men took command. Especially Youri Tielemans, James Maddison and Ayoze Perez found each other well, they will be a force.
First Ayoze Perez got a great chance from a fantastic Youri Tielemans pass, but the Atalanta goalkeeper made a terrific save. Then a few minutes after, in the 61st minute Perez were again in action and scored a terrific goal, dribbling a few Atalanta defenders and just curling the ball on the floor and into the corner, Leicester City were up 1-0.
Leicester City showed some great stuff, and Ricardo Pereira started to push forward as we all know he can. Then in the 75th minute, experienced sub, Christian Fuchs makes a special and long throw in, finding Jamie Vardy who just troll the Atalanta defense and make another great strike, Leicester City are 2-0 up.
The towards the end, Leicester had another goals scored by a fantastic Christian Fuchs shot, but it was “No Fuchs Given” and correctly whistled off, with Evans clearly in interference with the ball, so still 2-0.
Just as the final minute came close, Atalanta were given a penalty when Ricardo Pereira makes a foolish tackle, and a well placed penalty was never to be stopped by Kasper Schmeichel, who himself had little to do in this match.
Leicester City goes through the pre-season unbeaten and TCF is impressed with the performance today, really outplaying a Champions League qualified team ending 3rd in the Serie A last season.
So have we been given any answers by Brendan Rodgers during pre-season. One is that he did play Evans and Soyuncu together in three of those games, and this partnership looked rock solid today.
Fuchs, Silva, Barnes and Gray were the preferred subs, as others were not given a chance. Ndidi will come back from the African Nations Cup, so will Islam Slimani. A few players will leave, with Mendy and Amartey both believed to be on their way out.
The pre-season have been very promising and all credit to Brendan Rodgers, dealing with that Harry Maguire affair in the best way possible. Perez and Tielemans are two massive signings, with further transfer moves a bit in the air as they have to be clear by Thursday 8th of August.
To sum it all up,
- Scoring twice, winning the game
- Perez looks great, Tielemans and Maddison linking up
- Vardy is ready to go, will be plenty of goals from him this season
- Evans is a leader, playing well together with Souyuncu
- Pereira is a force, well placed runs down the flank
- Pushing a 3rd place Serie A team to their limits
- Nothing special
- Player Ratings: Schmeichel 7. Pereira 7, Chilwell 7, Evans 7, Soyuncu 7, Choudhury 7, Maddison 7, Tielemans 8, Albrighton 7, Vardy 7, Perez 8, Subs: Fuchs, Silva, Barnes, Gray
Match Stats: H/A
- Possession: 48 / 52
- Offsides: 4 / 1