English Premiership

No Vardy, no party as Boro hold Leicester

2017-01-02 16:41
Robert Huth (Getty)

Middlesbrough - Leicester City's underwhelming season continued on Monday as they were held to a 0-0 draw at Middlesbrough that did little for either side's hopes of avoiding Premier League relegation.

With Jamie Vardy completing his three-game suspension and Riyad Mahrez again disappointing, Leicester lacked a cutting edge and it was Boro who came closest to taking all three points at the Riverside Stadium.

The result inched both sides a point further clear of the bottom three, but the threat of relegation will continue to stalk them when they return to league action after next weekend's FA Cup third-round fixtures.

Champions Leicester have now gone 12 away games without victory in the Premier League, stretching back to the 2-0 win at Sunderland last April that nudged them closer to their fairytale title win.

With both teams having played on New Year's Eve -- Leicester edging West Ham United 1-0, Boro cruelly beaten 2-1 at Manchester United -- they each made five changes to their starting XIs.

Leicester, for whom Islam Slimani was absent with a fever, made the more lively start.

Shinji Okazaki could not make anything of Leonardo Ulloa's knock-down from Mahrez's free-kick, while Christian Fuchs drilled wide from the edge of the box.

But as the game wore on, Boro began to take control, with Adama Traore to the fore.

The former Barcelona winger had a penalty shout turned down in the 18th minute when he appeared to be impeded by Robert Huth right on the edge of the Leicester box.

Moments later the 20-year-old sped to the byline on the right and cut the ball back for Marten de Roon, who shot over.

Antonio Barragan returned from suspension for Boro, but he limped off clutching his hamstring in the 34th minute, with George Friend coming on.

Another Boro full-back caught the eye shortly before half-time, Fabio da Silva sliding in brilliantly to prevent Mahrez taking aim from Okazaki's through ball.

Left-back Friend emerged as an improbable most likely source of a goal in the second half.

He warmed Kasper Schmeichel's palms from 25 yards and then cut in from the right, only to skew his shot wide.

He also curled an inviting cross into the box from the left, but Adam Forshaw could not make telling contact.

All Leicester mustered in response was an Ulloa header that Brad Guzan saved comfortably.

Visiting manager Claudio Ranieri took decisive action by sending on Ahmed Musa in place of Mahrez, who produced another low-key display in his last game before departing for the Africa Cup of Nations with Algeria.

But it was Boro who continued to push, Gaston Ramirez squandering a golden chance to snatch victory when he lashed wide following a tame clearance by Wes Morgan.

NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
Saturday, 26 August 2017
AFC Bournemouth v Manchester City, Vitality Stadium 13:30
Crystal Palace v Swansea City, Selhurst Park 16:00
Newcastle United v West Ham United, St. James' Park 16:00
Huddersfield Town v Southampton, The John Smith's Stadium 16:00
Watford v Brighton & Hove Albion, Vicarage Road Stadium 16:00
Manchester United v Leicester City, Old Trafford 18:30
Sunday, 27 August 2017
Chelsea v Everton, Stamford Bridge 14:30
West Bromwich Albion v Stoke City, The Hawthorns 14:30
Liverpool v Arsenal, Anfield 17:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Burnley, Wembley Stadium 17:00
Saturday, 09 September 2017
Manchester City v Liverpool, Etihad Stadium 13:30
Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth, Emirates Stadium 16:00
Everton v Tottenham Hotspur, Goodison Park 16:00
Leicester City v Chelsea, King Power Stadium 16:00
Southampton v Watford, St. Mary's Stadium 16:00
Brighton & Hove Albion v West Bromwich Albion, The American Express Community Stadium 16:00
Stoke City v Manchester United, Bet365 Stadium 18:30
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2016/17 season?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2017/18 PSL season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.