Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Player Ratings: Leicester trio thwart Leeds despite decent signs from first Jesse Marsch showing

Dan James and Joe Gelhardt during a Leeds United match

Jesse Marsch suffered a defeat in his first match in charge of Leeds United, as Harvey Barnes capped off a big performance for Leicester City with the only goal in a 1-0 win for the Foxes.

Leeds had three times as many shots as their hosts in a first-half that showed they should maintain a similar intensity under Marsch to what they displayed under Marcelo Bielsa. However, neither side could break the deadlock by the half-time whistle.

Leeds began the second half on top as well, but fell behind when Harvey Barnes scored after a give-and-go with Kelechi Iheanacho in the 67th minute.

As a result, Leeds remain just two points outside the relegation zone. Things are looking up for Leicester again, though, as they climb into the top half for now.

They had big performances at either end of the pitch to thank. Barnes, Kasper Schmeichel and Caglar Soyuncu were among the standout players.


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Leicester City

Kasper Schmeichel: Celebrating becoming the third-highest appearance maker in Leicester history, did well to tip around Leeds’ first attempt for a corner, which he then comfortably claimed. Reacted well to prevent another Leeds corner causing danger at the start of the second half after Rodrigo’s header. Also stood firm to deny a Raphinha tap-in from open play. 8

Hamza Choudhury: Read the play well throughout the first half on Leicester’s right-hand side, averting danger. Withdrawn early in the second after opening up a bit too much space for Leeds. 7

Daniel Amartey: Defended well in the centre with some blocks and interceptions. 7

Caglar Soyuncu: Made a well-judged block to prevent a shot from Firpo testing Schmeichel in the last five minutes of the first half. Hurt himself making a strong intervention against a Raphinha shot soon after. Frequently got in the way of what Leeds were trying to build. 8

Luke Thomas: Fairly comfortable at left-back, tending to keep Leeds quiet. 6

Youri Tielemans: Didn’t quite seem like his usual self in terms of passing, if not to a terrible standard. 6

Wilfred Ndidi: Involved in a number of battles, conceding a couple of fouls but also making better blocks. Found space to test Meslier with a header late in the first half. Picked up a yellow card within 10 minutes of the second. 6

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall playing for Leicester City

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall: Did his defensive duties from the get-go, showing plenty of energy off the ball in midfield. Also made good use of the ball. 8

Marc Albrighton: Whipped in a good delivery to create Leicester’s last chance of the first half from a corner. Dropped into a full-back position at the end of a big shift. 7

Jamie Vardy: Making a first start of 2022, his sharp movement was sometimes problematic for Leeds. Couldn’t get one-on-one with Meslier at any stage before his exit. 6

Harvey Barnes: Had Leicester’s first shot of the match and continued trying to drive from the left wing. Inspired the first goal of the game and finished the move himself. 8

Substitutes:

Kelechi Iheanacho (on for Vardy, 61 mins): Provided fresh legs in place of Vardy and got the assist for the opening goal. 7

Ademola Lookman (on for Choudhury, 61): Failed to make the most of a decent chance to kill the game off late on. 6

Nampalys Mendy (on for Ndidi, 76): N/A


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Leeds United

Illan Meslier: Was comfortable with his first involvement to smother a shot from Barnes and held onto an Ndidi header before the break. Showed good footwork to avoid being dispossessed in his own box on a couple of occasions. Finally breached when Barnes put it past him for 1-0. 7

Stuart Dallas: Playing at right-back, was given a tough test by Barnes. Showed decent delivery going the other way, but taken out of the game by the one-two between Barnes and Iheanacho for the opening goal. 5

Luke Ayling: Covering in the centre of defence, tended to get in the right place at the right time, but was bypassed on occasion. Made a good last-ditch challenge to prevent Iheanacho getting one-on-one. 7

Pascal Struijk: Earned the first yellow card of the game for getting the wrong side of Vardy. Settled down after with some important blocks, sweeping up well. 6

Junior Firpo: Denied by a block from Soyuncu after getting into central territory as half-time approached. Got forward to put in an inviting low cross for a Raphinha chance. Defended well to keep the score down after Leeds had gone behind. 7

Robin Koch: Generally composed at the base of midfield. Showed a decent, if not perfect, range of passing. 6

Raphinha: Quieter than usual in the first half, when he only really had one chance. Thwarted by Schmeichel with one effort in the second. 6

Mateusz Klich: Looked to play forwards throughout but sometimes lacking off the ball. 6

Rodrigo Moreno: Gave the ball away a couple of times due to a lack of awareness, struggling to pick passes with the appropriate weight. Went down in the box too easily, although there was a touch, to appeal for a penalty towards the end of the first half. Sliced an aerial shot from a corner before the break. Nearly caught Schmeichel out with a header at the start of the second half but was soon taken off. 5

Jack Harrison: Set up James for Leeds’ first chance of the game with a well-weighted pass. Found space on the edge of the box to win a corner with their first chance of the second half too. 6

Dan James: Enjoyed his freedom up front. Made good movement to latch onto Harrison’s early pass, forcing a save from Schmeichel. Returned the favour for another chance after a darting dribble. Also showed delicate technique to tee up Raphinha for the next sight of goal. Faded after the break. 7

Substitutes:

Joe Gelhardt (on for Rodrigo, 63): Set up soon after coming on, turning in the box to earn a shooting chance. 6

Adam Forshaw (on for Klich, 70): Booked with his first involvement after being introduced. 6

Tyler Roberts (on for Harrison, 76): Involved in a collision that restricted him soon after his entry to the field. N/A