Leicester snap winless skid with multi-comeback win over Aston Villa
Leicester overturned not one, but two deficits to put an end to their five-game winless skid and secure a 4-2 victory over Aston Villa at Villa Park on Saturday.
[ MORE: How to watch Premier League in USA ]
The victory takes Leicester (21 points), who had previously taken just one point of a possible 15, up to 13th in the Premier League table, now three points clear of the relegation zone. Eight teams remain within three points of 18th-place Everton, including those currently below them. Aston Villa (28 points) are not among them, but they remain 11th following the defeat.
The goals came early and often, for both sides, with Aston Villa racing out to an early lead through Ollie Watkins in the 9th minute, cleaning up the rebound after Philippe Coutinho’s shot smashed off the crossbar.
Leicester were level just three minutes later, though, as Boubacar Kamara was dispossessed inside his own penalty area while Aston Villa tried to
pass spin and dribble their way out from the back. Eventually, Kelechi Iheanacho won the ball and found James Maddison, who slotted past Emi Martinez to make it 1-1.
Watkins’ fingerprints were all over Villa’s second goal in the 32nd minute, as he cut in from the left wing, crossed the ball low. Harry Souttar blocked it, but sent the ball bounding and spinning past Danny Ward at the near post for a debut own goal. Iheanacho leveled things once again just nine minutes later with a well-placed finish and Tete, the 22-year-old Brazilian and Leicester’s prize recruit of the January transfer window, put the Foxes ahead with an even better finish (also assisted by Iheanacho) in first-half stoppage time.
Aston Villa thought they had equalized midway through the second half, but the offside flag went up after Philippe Coutinho lifted the ball over Ward. It wasn’t the Brazilian who was offside, but a teammate in an earlier part of the build-up leading to the goal.
That was one close call too many for Leicester, who doubled their lead and went 4-2 up after Dennis Praet rounded Martinez and beat the last defender racing back.
How to watch Aston Villa vs Leicester live, stream link and start time
Kick off: 10am ET, SaturdayTV Channel: USA NetworkOnline: Stream via NBCSports.com
Key storylines & star players
Ollie Watkins has scored or assisted in five of his last eight appearances for Villa in the Premier League and Emiliano Buendia has a pair of goals in his four PL starts since the calendar turned 2023.
Is James Maddison fit to start? The England midfielder missed four-straight games for Leicester, all losses, before returning for the final 21 minutes against Brighton on Jan. 21? He’s so important to the way Brendan Rodgers want to run an attack, and he’s clearly not leaving the club this season.
Aston Villa team news, injuries, lineup options
OUT: John McGinn (hamstring), Diego Carlos (achilles), Ludwig Augustinsson (illness), Jed Steer (calf) | QUESTIONABLE: Lucas Digne (shoulder)
Leicester team news, injuries, lineup options
OUT: Ricardo Pereira (achilles), Boubakary Soumare (thigh), Ryan Bertrand (knee), James Justin (achilles), Jonny Evans (calf) | QUESTIONABLE: Jamie Vardy (buttock), Wilfred Ndidi (undisclosed)