Friday, 28 August 2015

Ranieri's revitalised Foxes come to Dean Court

Taking on Leicester City at home in August might have seemed a favourable early game when the fixtures were announced. However, now the Foxes sit up in an enviable second place having played three games and won two and drawn once so far this season. As an undefeated team they are more than capable of making it difficult away from home and the Cherries will want to get their first home points having missed out against Aston Villa.

There is little sign of the Leicester team that looked unsure about it's Premier League status at the start of last season. With Nigel Pearson having taken them on a string run at the end of last season they were still seen by many pundits to be a club that would struggle in their second season in this league. Far from it, Claudio Ranieri has come in and added pace and attacking strength to their side with Algerian right winger Riyad Marhrez's four goals not going unnoticed.
Leicester City will be protecting their unbeaten record this season.
Leicester City are far from a one man team though. Marc Albrighton has also been hitting form and marked his King Power game last weekend with a goal with the onlooking Roy Hodgson reported to be interested in adding the former Villa midfielder to the England squad. Danny Drinkwater has also been given more of a free role which has enabled him to get forward more as shown against West Ham recently. Up front there is the talented Jamie Vardy who we know all about - high work rate, fast across the ground and fearless when sent through one on one. That is added to by the hard working Japanese striker Shinji Okazaki, while Leonardo Ulloa is now fit again and could start against the Cherries having played midweek against Bury. 

Renieri has added to the squad in the summer as well with defensive talent of Austrian captain Christian Fuchs from Schalke. There have also been new contracts and extensions for defenders Robert Huth and Jeff Schlupp, respectively. Most of the new signings have had a run out - Gokhan Inler (midfielder) from Napoli, N'Golo Kante (midfielder) from Caen, Yohan Benalouane (centre back) from Atlanta (was sub but did not play last match).

The injury news ahead of the game is that Matty James will miss out with his knee injury and youngster Joe  Dodoo who had a great midweek hat-trick against Bury will travel with Leicester City. The Foxes may find that they have missed out on signing Demarai Gray though from Birmingham (we've all been there), according to the Leicester Mercury.

You can listen in to a preview to the game from a Leicester point of view below, thanks to the Leicester City Forum on BBC Radio Leicester (Kris Temple is on there after 35mins and Eddie Howe on 41min).

Leicester City last time out against Spurs
01 Schmeichel, 02 de Laet, 06 Huth, 05 Morgan, 15 Schlupp
26 Mahrez (Ulloa - 94 ), 10 King Booked, 04 Drinkwater (Inler 80), 11 Albrighton (Kanté 78)
20 Okazaki, 09 Vardy

Substitutes: 14 Kanté, 19 Kramaric, 23 Ulloa, 28 Fuchs, 29 Benalouane, 32 Schwarzer,
33 Inler

My probable team for AFCB Probable team: (4-4-1-1) Boruc (GK), Francis (RB), Elphick (CD), Cook (CD), Daniels (LB), Ritchie (RW), O’Kane (CM), Pugh (LW), Gradel (FW), Wilson (FW)

Cherries Bench: Federici (GK), Smith (RD/RM), Distin (CB), Stanislas (LM), Gosling (CM), Tomlin (FW), Kermorgant (FW)

Extra AFCB news
Stephane Zubar has returned to AFCB having sustained cruciate ligament damage that could see him out for the rest of the season having been on loan at York City and damaged his leg during a match against Minstermen.

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