Leicester finally wake up as they beat woeful Liverpool

After a week of controversy at Leicester following the sacking of Claudio Ranieri. The club would have wanted a good result in the game against Liverpool, that is exactly what they got. Liverpool who had 16 days to prepare for last night’s game were off the pace from the very first minute.

Jamie Vardy scored twice, his first Premier League goals since December 10 and Danny Drinkwater’s incredible volley handed the beleaguered champions their first victory since New Year’s Eve, as interim boss Craig Shakespeare got off to a winning start. Whilst last night’s win have helped ease their relegation fears, it raises some serious questions of the current champions. Leicester have not been at it all season, from the very first minute of the game they were first to every ball and hounding down the Liverpool players. It was like the Leicester of last season.

The thing that puzzles and annoys me is – how can players decide to suddenly put more effort in? If Ranieri was still in charge I can almost guarantee the players would not have put in that kind of performance. It saddens me because Ranieri gave his all for the club and the players seemed to down tools on him. I said before Ranieri was sacked, that if the manager does go and the players start performing straight away, it will make them look even worse.

There was no doubt that Leicester were fantastic on the night, but how poor were Liverpool? I couldn’t believe what I was watching last night, they left so much space in behind for the likes of Vardy and Mahrez to run into. That was one of the worst performances I have seen from Liverpool in a long time. Philippe Coutinho’s second-half strike was a mere consolation as the Reds’ top-four challenge faltered.

Jamie Vardy’s crunching tackle on Sadio Mane in the opening minute set the tone, and was quickly followed by Wilfred Ndidi lashing an early volley over the bar, as the reinvigorated champions set about Liverpool. Robert Huth and Shinji Okazaki called Simon Mignolet into action with headers before Huth, unmarked in the area, flashed a header over on the quarter-hour mark. Liverpool should have fallen behind on 20 minutes but Vardy, having been played in behind by Marc Albrighton, sliced a volley straight at Mignolet. However, Vardy managed to beat Mignolet just eight minutes later, out-sprinting Lucas Leiva to gather Albrighton’s incisive pass before slotting past the Reds goalkeeper at his near post.

Mignolet was helpless to prevent Drinkwater’s incredible effort from the edge of the area from flying into the back of the net, as Leicester doubled their advantage before the interval. Liverpool failed to register a single shot on target throughout the whole of the first period. Riyad Mahrez and Christian Fuchs combined brilliantly to set up Vardy, who glanced home his second on the hour mark. Coutinho rounded off the visitors’ best move of the game to reduce the arrears, slotting home after combining with Emre Can on 68 minutes.

Liverpool offered very little to threaten Leicester. Klopp must be worried with what he saw last night, if results do not improve soon, Klopp could well be the next surprise sacking of the Premier League season.

I do wonder what Ranieri must be thinking, Craig Shakespeare didn’t have much time to prepare the players for the game following the sacking of Ranieri. It was clearly not down to tactics, the players just put more effort in. Leicester players were fighting for each-other again and that proved to be the difference. The real test comes on Saturday when Hull City visit the King Power. A lot of players can get up for a game against one of the bigger teams and put in a great performance, however it is important to replicate that performance against a side that is closer to you in the table.