Leicester are very much a Jekyll and Hyde side so far this season, fantastic in the Champions League but off the boil when it comes to the defence of their Premier League title. The last 7 days has really shown the two sides of Leicester as they were soundly beaten by Chelsea but continued their 100 percent European record with a win over FC Copenhagen.
Leicester ran out 1-0 winners on Tuesday over Danish side Copenhagen and they had Riyad Mahrez to thank for getting the games only goal. Eyebrows were raised last Saturday when he was rested for the first time in 36 league matches but that decision almost looked inspired as he was on hand to bag the winner and give Leicester a maximum haul of 9 points in the Champions League.
The question is why can’t Leicester play like that in the league, i don’t think it’s down to one particularly reason but it must be somewhat of an issue for Claudio Ranieri as he struggles to have his Leicester side fire on all cylinders on a weekly basis.
What’s worse reading is their away form this season, 4 matches played, 0 points scored and 13 goals conceded so it is probably with some relief for Ranieri that Leicester are at home this afternoon for the visit of Alan Pardew’s Crystal Palace side.
The Eagles saw their unbeaten run come to an end in the driving rain last Saturday evening as West Ham got the better of them in what was in fairness not a classic London derby. The conditions certainly didn’t help the flow of the game but Pardew will no doubt be ruing not only the result but Christian Benteke’s first half penalty miss.
By the end of the weekend that loss had seen Palace slip down a position in the table to 9th and also a 5 game unbeaten run coming to an end. After a run of form last season that saw Alan Pardew’s slide down the table at an alarming pace, Eagles fans will be glad that things are different.
That said though their early season form last season was impressive and looked what happened after Christmas, had it not been for those pre-December results they could have very well been looking relegation in the eye and it’s fair to say a F.A. Cup Final appearance very much papered over the cracks.
Those cracks have been filled in for now and although Benteke had an off day last Saturday his goals this season have been a welcome boost to a side that was very short on goals in the 2015/16 campaign. As long as he can get the right service each week then Palace shouldn’t have to be looking over their shoulders.
As for Today, Alan Pardew will certainly fancy his chances as Leicester have blown cold in the league this season but I think the champions can use Tuesday’s win as a springboard and kickstart their season on a domestic front. I reckon this will be a home win.