Wout Faes scores two personal objectives as hosts triumph

Martin O’Neill had many qualities as a supervisor however the one which endeared him most to Leicester Metropolis followers was merely a capability to win matches when eclipsed by expertise and funding. In 4 visits to Anfield from 1996 to 2000, O’Neill’s Foxes beat Liverpool 3 times and drew as soon as; in 11 subsequent journeys within the Premier League, they’ve misplaced 9 and drawn two. Little doubt O’Neill was a greater strategist than Gerard Houllier however to assume he pulled off his remaining victory there with objectives from a 34-year-old Tony Cottee and perennial fourth-choice centre-back Phil Gilchrist in opposition to a aspect containing Michael Owen, Robbie Fowler, Emile Heskey, Didi Hamann, Sami Hyypia, Jamie Carragher et al, a aspect that will win three cups the next season, speaks volumes for O’Neill’s shrewdness.
How Leicester might do with a few of that at this time. Brendan Rodgers appeared to have chucked within the towel on Boxing Day together with his workforce choice and at 3-0 down at half-time in opposition to Newcastle will need to have feared a shellacking. On condition that they’d gained 4 of their earlier 5 earlier than the World Cup break, driving them from backside of the league to thirteenth, how a lot they depend on James Maddison for his or her inventive spark was solely emphasised by his knee-injury enforced absence. Sadly he will not be again tonight. 2021’s signings additionally proceed to disappoint.
As for Liverpool, they have been worthy winners at Villa Park the place the interaction of their full-backs, Trent Alexander-Arnold’s extraordinary vary of passing, and sharp ending noticed off an Aston Villa aspect that did trigger them, and specifically their habitually excessive line of defense, some issues. There was an encouraging first begin for 10 months for Alex Olxlade-Chamberlain, Darwin Nunez ran his socks off despite the fact that his ending didn’t match his endeavours and Stefan Bajcetic confirmed why there was such clamour for him to be extra concerned.
I am unable to discover anybody, the bookies not least, anticipating something aside from a snug residence win. I suppose Rodgers, who, like most ex-Liverpool managers, Kenny Dalglish in 1993 aside, has struggled on his return to Anfield, unable to be ruthless due to the tug on their coronary heart strings, might have been holding again one thing on Boxing Day for tonight’s match. However to this observer he appears like a person already preoccupied with the window and dashing to get there as rapidly as attainable.     

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