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Leicester sink closer to relegation zone with defeat to Chelsea

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Chelsea eased past Leicester City to earn their third straight win in all competitions and ease the pressure on Graham Potter.

Chelsea got goals from Ben Chilwell, Kai Havertz and Mateo Kovacic to beat Leicester City 3-1 at King Power Stadium on Saturday.

[ MORE: How to watch Premier League in USA ]

The victory keeps Chelsea (37 points - 10th place) clear of the bottom half of the Premier League table, now three full points above 11th-place Aston Villa following their first set of back-to-back league victories since Oct. 16 (17 games - 4W-6D-7L). Leicester (24 points - 16th place) are now just one point clear of the relegation zone after a fourth straight defeat (by a combined margin of 8-1).

Chilwell opened the scoring with a stunning strike against his former club, smashing a left-footed volley past Danny Ward from an incredibly tight angle in the 11th minute. It was the first shot of the game for the Blues, who somehow managed not to concede an equalizer just three minutes later when Daniel Amartey headed wide from a yard out. FotMob’s xG model rated the chance at 0.97.

Chelsea thought they had gone 2-0 ahead just after the half-hour mark, but Joao Felix was narrowly offside when the ball was cut back to him inside the penalty area, and the VAR ruled it out after a review. Four minutes later, Patson Daka showed incredible close control in traffic and struck from outside the penalty area to pull the hosts level on 39 minutes.

1-1 would have been a fair halftime score, but the Leicester backline fell asleep in the final few seconds and Havertz timed his run to perfection just as Enzo Fernandez chipped the ball into the penalty area. Havertz took the chance so casually that he appeared to think he was well offside, offering little to no celebration, but the Blues were 2-1 ahead after surviving a dominant period of play by Leicester.

Kovacic put the game to bed with a sensational volley in the 78th minute, set up by Mykhailo Mudryk, as he leapt into the air and struck the ball sweetly for a 3-1 advantage and final scoreline.

WATCH LEICESTER vs CHELSEA FULL MATCH REPLAY


Stars of the show

Leicester vs Chelsea

Photo: FotMob.com


What’s next?

Chelsea will try to hold tight to their place in the top of the table when they host relegation battlers Everton at Stamford Bridge on Saturday (1:30 pm ET). Leicester will have their hands full with a tricky trip to west London to take on Brentford earlier in the day (11 am ET).

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How to watch Leicester vs Chelsea live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 10am ET, SaturdayTV Channel: USA NetworkOnline: Stream via NBCSports.com


Key storylines & in-form players to watch

Leicester fall into the category of a team that is too good to go down. But are they? Defensively they have become sloppy again and the fact they keep missing big chances is a real concern. James Maddison is their main hope of moving away from the bottom three and he continues to dazzle but others around him are really struggling, especially forwards Kelechi Iheancho, Jamie Vardy and Patson Daka.

Chelsea look solid at the back and have finally started to figure a few things out in attack. Potter’s side have conceded just five goals in their last nine games in all competitions but they’ve also scored just five times in that stretch. Raheem Sterling and Kai Havertz were very sharp in midweek against Dortmund (both scored) and having Reece James back fit is a huge bonus as they’ve moved to a back three. There is now real competition in central defense as Wesley Fofana and Benoit Badiashile look set for a bright partnership together. Kepa continues to play well in goal, while Mateo Kovacic and Enzo Fernandez are locking down midfield.


Leicester team news, injuries, lineup options

OUT: Ryan Bertrand (knee), James Justin (achilles), Ryan Bertrand (knee), Youri Tielemans (ankle), Victor Kristiansen (ankle) | QUESTIONABLE: Harvey Barnes (ankle), Jonny Evans (thigh)

Chelsea team news, injuries, lineup options

OUT: N’Golo Kante (hamstring), Thiago Silva (knee), Edouard Mendy (shoulder), Cesar Azpilicueta (head), Armando Broja (knee) | QUESTIONABLE: Mason Mount (abdominal)



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