Leicester beat Nottingham Forest to ease pressure on Brendan Rodgers

Breathing a sigh of relief, Brendan Rodgers put the pressure on Steve Cooper as Leicester ended their winless start to the season on eight attempts with a fine 4-0 win over Nottingham Forest.

In a meeting of two pressured managers and their struggling teams, Rodgers celebrated after full-time after Leicester struck three in 10 first-half minutes – two from the standout James Maddison on either side of Harvey Barnes’ curling strike.

Maddison then turned to assist in the second half, hitting substitute Patson Daka for the final blow.

It was enough to lift Leicester off the foot of the table at the expense of their East Midlands rivals, a much-needed success for Rodgers as Leicester chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha flew in to watch his first game in person in six weeks.

Cooper’s prospects are far less certain after a fifth straight league loss – Forest’s worst run since January 2004.

It’s been a year and 12 days since Cooper took the job and has worked miracles as he lifted Forest from the Championship relegation zone to the Premier League for the first time in 23 years.

But after signing 22 players in a major makeover this summer, it’s not clear if Cooper knows his best XI or if Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis will give him the time to work it out.

The dangerous situation both clubs found themselves in before kick-off was barely noticeable as fans filled King Power Stadium with noise and the only calls for Rodgers to leave were from the Forest fans in the corner of the to hear the stadium.

Jamie Vardy, back in Leicester’s starting line-up, scraped an early shot wide before Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall miraculously missed with a free header in front of goal.

Vardy then broke away from the Forest defense to miss a Maddison free-kick before firing straight at Dean Henderson after being played in by a midfielder in the mood to stake his England claim.

Forest couldn’t get the ball, his pressure coming from a number of early set pieces, but they created a great chance on 22 minutes when Morgan Gibbs-White played in Taiwo Awoniyi, who hopped past Wout Faes but saw his shot jump back from the post.

It was a disappointment for Leicester which they quickly took full advantage of.

Jesse Lingard missed Maddison, whose shot was deflected off Scott McKenna to hit Henderson in the 25th minute.

It was 2-0 two minutes later when Barnes smashed in from the left and deflected a shot wide of the goalkeeper.

The forest was imploding, and Leicester were happy to pile it up. After Cheikhou Kouyate was cautioned for Dewsbury-Hall’s fall on the edge of the D, Maddison compounded the punishment when he rolled a free-kick over the stationary Henderson.

Serge Aurier made his Forest debut at the break, one of three substitutions as Cooper also sent Remo Freuler and Ryan Yates.

Six minutes after the restart, Awoniyi was caught offside when he ran on goal, but Danny Ward would still have gained confidence from his save.

Instead, it was Leicester who went on. Barnes hit a shot that deflected off the arm of Steve Cook, who looked relieved when only a corner was awarded.

The fourth came in the 73rd minute when Maddison added an assist to his two goals and crossed Daka to beat Henderson with a clean shot at the near post.

At the other end, Ward made a good save from Brennan Johnson at his near post, then from Gibbs-White’s header to save Leicester’s first clean sheet of the season in a fine night for the Foxes and an ominous one for Forest.

https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/leicester-steve-cooper-nottingham-forest-danny-ward-cheikhou-kouyate-b2192176.html Leicester beat Nottingham Forest to ease pressure on Brendan Rodgers

Fry Electronics Team

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