Brendan Rodgers on Community Shield victory and winning mentality
A late Kelechi Ihenancho penalty gave Leicester City the perfect start to the new season as they defeated Manchester City to win the FA Community Shield.
The game started on an even playing field, with the Cityzens getting the first real chance of the game. Gundogan’s free-kick from around 30 yards was tipped over by Schmeichel as both teams looked to get on the front foot. Manchester City was winning corners after some sustained pressure but Vardy did bring out a save from Steffen at the other end.
The game settled down after that with not much action with no side overly eager to commit too many men forward. Vardy had the best chance right at the stroke of halftime. His shot with the left boot was brilliantly touched onto the post by a scrambling Steffen from close range as the sides entered the halfway point scoreless.
The second half started in the same sedate manner with Mahrez firing over from a good free-kick chance before Gundogan blasted over from a smart corner routine. Leicester was now relying on the counter to hit Manchester City but was almost sucker-punched themselves after Mahrez allowed through on goal. The Algerian blazed over and it was clear that the Cityzens were trying to dominate matters now.
The loudest cheer of the match till then came in the 65th minute with Grealish coming on for his much-awaited debut. Leicester responded with a host of changes themselves. The game had slowed considerably as both teams were dealing with a sense of tiredness and lack of killer instinct. The goalkeepers were hardly being worked, with Steffen having to rush off his line to get to the ball before Iheanacho in the 85th minute being notable. It looked like one goal would be enough to settle matters.
That moment came in the 87th minute as Ake dawdled on the ball too long which allowed Iheanacho to steal the ball and get bundled over. Though the referee did not blow his whistle immediately, eventually the penalty was given. The Nigerian stepped up and converted against his old club who did venture forward at the end but came up empty-handed.
Iheanacho (89′) [PEN]