Enzo Maresca felt Championship leaders Leicester thoroughly deserved their thumping 4-0 win over Plymouth as they secured their biggest victory of the season so far.

Leicester took the lead through Stephy Mavididi’s 14th-minute penalty before Patson Daka coolly found the net four minutes into the second period and the former struck again with a drilled effort after 52 minutes to make it three.

The Foxes completed the scoring after 55 minutes courtesy of Wilfred Ndidi’s accurate finish, the Nigeria international continuing to impress boss Maresca, who has given the midfielder more of an attacking role this term.

Maresca said: “It was a very good performance, we completely deserved the three points, we controlled the game really well.

“We are trying to improve the way we play. We know we have the best defence and we have scored the second most goals in the league.

“Wilf has improved a lot. In terms of physicality you expect everything, you don’t expect quality (in the final third), but since day one I can see there is something there.

“I’m happy because when you see a player making the effort to understand how they have to play it’s good and he deserves it.

“The situation with Patson has been a bit strange. Since day one he has worked and behaved fantastically, but because I play with one striker he hasn’t got many minutes.

“It was a chance for him and he took it and I’m very happy for him because he completely deserves it.”

Plymouth suffered their heaviest defeat of the season and remain winless in 10 matches on their travels this campaign.

Argyle boss Steven Schumacher said: “We’re disappointed with the result. I was really pleased with a lot of aspects, the performance, effort and commitment was outstanding.

“We should have been level at half-time. In the second half we’ve been undone by one moment of quality and a couple of mistakes.

“As long as the players keep putting the effort in, which I know they are and our fans can see that they are, then we’ll be fine.

“We just didn’t have enough quality to put the ball in the back of the net. They’ve got better players than us and are more clinical and have played at a better level, we’re doing the best we can.

“The fans can see we’re giving it our all and doing our best, unfortunately we just came up against a team who are better than us.

“We cannot let our standard drop, we can’t let the energy drop, we need to be a bit more clinical in both boxes.”

Stephy Mavididi scored twice as Leicester cruised to a comfortable 4-0 win at home to Plymouth to remain top of the Championship table.

Mavididi opened the scoring from the penalty spot after 14 minutes before the Foxes scored three goals in a scintillating seven-minute spell after the break to take the game out of Argyle’s reach.

Patson Daka doubled Leicester’s lead with a cool finish after 49 minutes before Mavididi drilled home his second of the game just three minutes later.

Nigeria international Wilfred Ndidi completed the scoring in the 55th minute, finishing in off a post from Daka’s pass to ensure the Foxes remain one point clear at the top of the table.

Plymouth in contrast are winless in 10 league games on the road this season.

The game burst into life when Mavididi went to ground in the box under a challenge from Julio Pleguezuelo before stepping up to roll the resulting penalty into the bottom left corner.

Enzo Maresca’s side spurned a glorious chance to double their lead four minutes later as Ndidi shot straight at Argyle goalkeeper Michael Cooper when one on one after being played through by Harry Winks’ delightful pass.

Moments later Daka, making his first league start of the season, somehow failed to score from point-blank range at the back post before Abdul Fatawu’s curling shot went inches wide.

Plymouth’s best chance of the game fell to Mustupha Bundu just past the half-hour mark as Foxes goalkeeper Mads Hermansen made a crucial save to deny the Argyle attacker when one on one.

Leicester wasted another chance to stretch their lead before the break with Ndidi just unable to reach a ball across the box with the goal at his mercy following a blistering counter-attack.

The visitors almost drew level in first-half injury time as Hermansen kept out Callum Wright’s low shot with his legs.

However, the home side eventually doubled their lead four minutes into the second half as Daka opened his Championship account for the season with a cool finish into the bottom left corner from Fatawu’s flick.

The home side struck again as Mavididi showed excellent feet before drilling a low effort past Cooper from inside the area to all but end the game as a contest.

And Leicester made it four after 55 minutes as Ndidi passed the ball in off the left-hand post from a tight angle from Daka’s pass after Hamza Choudhury won possession deep in the Plymouth half.

The Foxes had chances to further add to their lead as Cooper made an excellent save to keep out Jannik Vestergaard’s header at the back post from Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s cross.

Argyle never gave up and went close to a consolation goal when substitute Luke Cundle fired straight at Hermansen when well-placed in the box.

Peter Wright admits he “created a monster” by allowing Luke Humphries to claim his first major in October, but does not think the hottest player on tour will win the World Championship.

Wright missed three match darts to beat Humphries in the quarter-finals in Leicester, allowing the 28-year-old to take victory and go on to win the tournament.

He quickly followed that up by lifting the Grand Slam of Darts and the Players Championship last month, which means he will head to Alexandra Palace for the season-ending spectacular as favourite.

‘Snakebite’, who ended a near two-year major trophy drought by winning the European Championship recently, thinks it could be too soon for Humphries this year.

“He is favourite because he has won three out of the last four majors, and I won the other one,” two-time world champion Wright told the PA news agency.

“I was the only other person to get close to him. It’s my fault, I created a monster because I had three darts at the Grand Prix to beat him and that was his first major. If I’d done that things would have been different.

“He’s a great darts player but I think it is a little bit too soon. Yes, I think he will win the worlds but just not yet.”

Wright’s second world title won at the start of 2022 must seem like a long time ago for the 53-year-old, who has struggled for consistent form.


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He still remains confident he can become just the third person to win more than two world crowns and says his winning know-how gives him an advantage.

“I believe I can win it, I am not playing until December 20 so it gives me three weeks tinkering with my darts to make them 95 or 98 per cent perfect, that’ll do.

“There is potential to become a third-time world champion. That is in my sights and I am looking forward to it.

“It puts a lot of pressure off my shoulders to know I have won it twice. I think I have got a lot of advantage over a lot of the field.

“I am nowhere near my best at the moment, but I know what it takes to win. I decided to go and put the practice in and I went and won the European. I have put my focus on the Worlds, to be prepared for winning it one more time.”

Tournament sponsor Paddy Power have teamed up with Prostate UK and will donate £1,000 for every 180 thrown.

Wright believes there will be more maximums than ever before as a result and urged men to answer three simple questions to check their risk for a disease which affects one in eight men.

“It’s a great cause, the sponsor putting up £1,000 for every 180 hit, there was 901 last year and I think there will be more this year,” Wright added.

“I think players won’t switch down to 19, they will stay up there and try and get another 180 for Prostate Cancer UK. It affects one in eight men. I’m 53 so I need to be getting checked.”

:: It takes 30 seconds to answer three questions to check your prostate cancer risk. Do it now by clicking on the following link: prostatecanceruk.org/180-risk.

Two more National Hunt meetings have fallen to the weather, with today’s fixture at Southwell and Thursday’s Leicester card both abandoned.

Southwell was hit by a further 9mm of rain overnight, which has left the turf track waterlogged and not fit for racing.

That means there will be no jump racing in Britain for the second successive day, after Ayr and Plumpton were lost yesterday.

There will, however, be all-weather Flat racing at Lingfield this afternoon and Wolverhampton this evening.

Leicester have already thrown in the towel regarding Thursday’s National Hunt fixture, with melting snow and heavy rain leaving the course waterlogged.

The British Horseracing Authority has scheduled an additional all-weather meeting at Southwell for that afternoon.

Leicester manager Enzo Maresca said it was “unbelievable” his team were given less time to recover than opponents West Brom despite beating them 2-1 in a dramatic late finish.

The Foxes briefly extended their lead at the top of the Sky Bet Championship to four points after Harry Winks scored a stoppage-time winner to cancel out substitute Josh Maja’s 89th-minute equaliser.

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall put Leicester in front after 72 minutes before unselfishly opting to set up Winks four minutes into time added on.

“It was a very difficult game because of them and because when you play Wednesday night and Saturday lunchtime it’s not easy, and they played Tuesday night, so they had 24 hours more to recover the energy,” said Maresca.

“For me it’s unbelievable when you play Wednesday night and Saturday – both teams have to play together (at the same time), not one on Tuesday and one on Wednesday because the difference is huge.”

Maresca claimed some of his players were tired during the game.

“Wilfred (Ndidi) came back from a long-term injury, we gave him some rest on Wednesday night but you could see he wasn’t fresh,” added the Italian.

“Wout Faes did a big effort to be there, and Jannik (Vestergaard), JJ (James Justin) the same.”

Dewsbury-Hall was Leicester’s standout player after scoring his sixth goal of the season and setting up the other, but Maresca wants more from him.

“In terms of goals, he is where he has to be, but with assists I’m not happy, because this one was quite easy,” he said. “He has to improve his last pass because he’s had many chances.”

Leicester led in the 72nd minute when Dewsbury-Hall headed home Ndidi’s cross.

Albion equalised in the 89th minute when Faes headed away Darnell Furlong’s throw-in and, when the ball came back in, Cedric Kipre helped it on and the grounded Ricardo Pereira could only tee up Maja to net his first Albion goal.

For the winner, Leicester broke following a long Albion throw-in and Kelechi Iheanacho found Dewsbury-Hall, who dribbled 40 yards before drawing Alex Palmer and slipping in Winks.

West Brom head coach Carlos Corberan admitted he had no regrets at going for broke instead of settling for a draw after the equaliser.

“We weren’t trying to defend the result – we were attacking how I think you need to attack, but prior to the throw-in we should have defended more calmly, not as aggressive so as not to give them the option to score,” he said.

“We attacked how we always attack. Sometimes to change something is negative.

“If I told my centre-backs not to go up (to join the attack), having scored a goal two minutes ago, at home, I’d have regretted this.

“There are many small aspects to correct – not just because we lost, but to not suffer transitions against opponents.

“The next time we have a throw-in, we must be prepared to not only try to score, but to try to score without the risk of suffering the transition.

“In the 93rd minute, sometimes you make mistakes because of the emotion, not even the emotion to attack, but the emotion to recover the ball, to help your team and to try to make a foul, to keep running.

“We are humans, this is why football is magic. These things happen.”

Harry Winks scored a last-gasp winner as Sky Bet Championship leaders Leicester beat West Brom 2-1 in a dramatic finish to give manager Enzo Maresca a winning first return to The Hawthorns.

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s 72nd-minute header – his sixth goal of the season – gave Leicester the lead and the midfielder then set up Winks in the fourth minute of stoppage time after substitute Josh Maja looked like he had rescued a point.

Maresca, who started his professional career at West Brom and played 47 games there between 1998-2000, will have been relieved as there was little between the teams, who both hit the goal frame in the first half.

West Brom had a penalty claim turned down when Grady Diangana went down after it appeared he was pushed over in the box; VAR might have intervened if it was available.

Albion then failed to react quickly enough when goalkeeper Mads Hermansen played a poor pass out and it was intercepted, Brandon Thomas-Asante eventually having a shot blocked.

The home side went even closer in the 25th minute when Cedric Kipre stabbed against a post with the goalkeeper beaten after Matt Phillips’s corner had flicked off a couple of heads.

But Leicester returned fire to hit the goal frame themselves when Kelechi Iheanacho’s low angled drive was deflected onto the near post by Darnell Furlong’s lunge.

It looked like things might open up after the break when Diangana’s curling shot was deflected over the bar off Wout Faes.

But instead it became very scrappy, with both teams guilty of giving the ball away in midfield and defences remained on top.

That almost changed when Wilfred Ndidi got on the end of a cross from substitute Abdul Fatawu, but his flicked header under pressure lacked the power to beat Alex Palmer, who fumbled before the ball was cleared.

The Ndidi-Fatawu link-up combined again to devastating effect in the 72nd minute.

Fatawu spotted Ndidi’s run beyond the Albion midfield in the inside right position and the latter crossed for Dewsbury-Hall to nod the ball home ahead of Furlong from six yards out.

Albion equalised in very scrappy fashion. Furlong’s throw-in was headed away by Faes and, when the ball came back in, Kipre helped it on – a grounded Leicester defender could only tee up Maja to prod home his first goal since February 2022.

But Leicester hit Albion on the counter when they broke on a long throw-in and Iheanacho passed from inside his own half to Dewsbury-Hall, who ran 40 yards with the ball before drawing Palmer and slipping in Winks for an open goal.

Danny Rohl hailed a “massive” point for Sheffield Wednesday and urged everyone to keep believing in his team after they came from behind to secure a 1-1 draw against leaders Leicester.

The Owls, bottom of the Championship, levelled with a stoppage-time equaliser from Jeff Hendrick after the visitors had led through Abdul Fatawu’s first-half goal.

Rohl said: “Our players did so very well today. When you look how we played against the first of the table, how we pressed and how we played football.

“We had two big chances after five minutes to go in the lead. We believed in our match-plan and we did well.

“It’s a good feeling at the end that we had a happy end. It’s important that everybody is believing in us, supporting us and sometimes being a little bit patient.

“I know that sometimes it looks a little bit calm but we need this calmness to prepare the next action.

“My players did very well. It was good energy. It’s not easy when you play a team with so much quality. It’s a Premier League team. We fight for everything.

“It is massive for us. I believe in my players and I believe in the club. I’m in the right place and I enjoy every single day. I’m looking to Saturday to do it again.

“We deserved it. We pressed at the right moment and prepared good actions.

“At the end, I take the point for sure. I think it was deserved and it is great to see how we can work as a team together.”

Leicester’s lead came on 28 minutes when Stephy Mavididi sent over a cross from the left which went all the way to the unmarked Fatawu at the far post and he chested the ball down before firing past keeper Cameron Dawson.

The equaliser came in the third minute of time added on when the ball was lofted into the area and Callum Paterson’s cushioned header fell perfectly into the path of Hendrick who finished with ease.

Leicester manager Enzo Maresca was not too down-hearted with the result.

He said: “Championship games, they never finish. Sometimes we can concede, like tonight. That’s been a shame because the game was almost finished. At the end we concede.

“We try always but we know it’s not easy because sometimes, even if you see the table tonight, the first against the last, but it’s complicated.

“This team draw away against Leeds so you never know. I think we controlled the game but at the end we then concede the draw.

“For sure we could do something better, no doubt, on the ball and off the ball, but it is what it is.

“Still top but this is a long race. In less than 72 hours, we have one more game. Now it is a matter of recovery. The most important thing is to recover the energy.

“We could do many things better. We create some chances where we need to be a bit more clinical. I think at two-nil the game is finished – we kill the game.

“The idea was to allow players to recover for the next game. You need to refresh.”

Struggling Sheffield Wednesday snatched a stoppage-time equaliser against Championship leaders Leicester in a 1-1 draw at Hillsborough.

Jeff Hendrick netted in the third minute of injury time to earn bottom side Wednesday a deserved point after a spirited performance following Abdul Fatawu’s 23rd-minute opener for the Foxes.

Wednesday skipper Barry Bannan spurned a golden opportunity inside the opening 30 seconds, dragging his shot wide after finding himself through on goal following a mistake from Ricardo Pereira.

Callum Paterson threatened to punish another defensive lapse minutes later, with Bannan again involved before the striker saw his effort blocked.

Another chance came Wednesday’s way when a Will Vaulks free-kick was met by Bambo Diaby, whose header was comfortably saved by Mads Hermansen.

Leicester’s lead came when Stephy Mavididi sent over a cross from the left which went all the way to the unmarked Fatawu at the far post and he chested the ball down before firing past keeper Cameron Dawson.

Bailey Cadamarteri had a chance in the latter stages of the half when the ball fell to him but his well-struck shot was blocked.

Wednesday’s George Byers then had a tame effort easily saved by Hermansen after the break as the hosts continued to threaten.

Kasey McAteer had a chance to extend Leicester’s lead late on but he poked the ball wide after receiving a pass from Jamie Vardy.

Wednesday’s Marvin Johnson then fired in a low shot but it was straight at Hermansen.

But the equaliser came in the third minute of time added on when the ball was lofted into the area and Paterson’s cushioned header fell perfectly into the path of Hendrick who finished with ease.

Jannik Vestergaard threatened to score with a header at the death, forcing Dawson to make an important save to preserve an impressive point for Danny Rohl’s side.

Jamie Vardy scored for the 11th match in a row on this day in 2015 to break Ruud van Nistelrooy’s Premier League record and earn Leicester a 1-1 draw with Manchester United.

The England forward opened the scoring against Manchester United in the 24th minute to surpass Van Nistelrooy’s 10-game mark, which had stood since 2003.

Vardy found his 14th goal of the season when he got on the end of Christian Fuchs’ pass and rifled past David De Gea from close range and become the first player to score in 11 consecutive games in the Premier League era.

Manchester United managed to find an equaliser when Bastian Schweinsteiger cancelled out Vardy’s opener with a powerful header from close range to make it 1-1.

The 28-year-old started the run of consecutive games with a late penalty in a 1-1 draw at Bournemouth three months earlier in August which included doubles against Arsenal and Southampton, a winner against Watford and the record-equalling strike in a 3-0 win at Newcastle the week before.

Vardy’s incredible run came after he was made an England international in June, just three years after becoming non-league football’s first £1million player following a move to the King Power Stadium from Fleetwood in 2012.

After breaking the record, Vardy said: “It’s unbelievable. I think I got a bit carried away with myself.

“Obviously we’ve got a lot of pace in the team and I think counter-attacking is a big advantage for us.

“If we can break as quick we have, then obviously it is going to benefit the team.”

Vardy’s goals helped power the Foxes to the Premier League crown under Claudio Ranieri and he finished the season as the league’s second top scorer behind Golden Boot winner Sergio Aguero.

No player has yet to break Vardy’s record which still stands and he went on to win more silverware with Leicester, lifting the FA Cup trophy in 2021 before being relegated with the club in 2023.

Leicester manager Enzo Maresca praised Jamie Vardy’s character after the former England striker missed an open goal before scoring twice to earn the Championship leaders a 2-0 win over Watford.

Vardy came off the bench to lift a Leicester side that had been struggling to break down Watford, who had been heading for a point after a stubborn display.

But it did not look like being Vardy’s day as he sent one opportunity over the bar, before missing again from four yards out.

Vardy refused to let the misses get to him though and he opened the scoring just two minutes later after Watford goalkeeper Daniel Bachmann had parried Jannick Vestergaard’s header.

In the third minute of stoppage time, Vardy sealed the points when he was brought down in the penalty area by Bachmann, who was shown a second yellow card by referee Sam Allison.

Defender Ryan Porteus had to go in goal and he could do nothing to prevent Vardy converting the spot-kick as he found the net for the first time since early October.

“You can miss, miss, miss, but in the end, you want to find a goal,” said Maresca, who saw his side win for the first time in three games.

“Jamie’s scored goals all his life and he will continue to do that. It’s in his blood.

“This is the reason why he’s Jamie Vardy. He’s scored more than 100 goals in the Premier League.

“You have to be there, to miss a chance and he was there again to score. That was the most important thing.

“The best thing for me, as a manager, is to take Jamie as an example – the way he behaved and showed he’s a leader and how he wants to win games.

“But when I saw Jamie missing twice, I thought it was a game we were not going to win.

“You expect missed chances from all of the players in the squad apart from Jamie!”

Leicester had 23 shots on goal – compared to one on target from Watford.

“This is a journey that started less than five months ago,” added Maresca. “Thinking in that time that everything is working well, it’s not the reality.

“But I was very happy to be honest, especially after two defeats and seeing how difficult it is to win games.”

Watford came into the game unbeaten in six matches and on the back of a 5-0 win over Rotherham.

But they rarely troubled Leicester – although they had a chance to equalise late in the game when Porteous tested goalkeeper Mads Hermansen.

Manager Valerien Ismael said that he felt Vardy was lucky to still be on the field before scoring his second goal.

Ismael pointed out that Vardy had already been booked for kicking the ball away when he went in strongly on Watford’s Wesley Hoedt.

But referee Allison did not show Vardy a second yellow card.

Ismael also admitted Bachmann’s dismissal could have been avoided as his first yellow was unnecessary.

The goalkeeper ran 50 yards to dispute Vardy’s challenge on Hoedt and was booked.

“I spoke with Dan. I said to him that the first yellow card can be avoided,” said Ismael.

“We had a meeting before the game and when you have a captain who is a goalkeeper we nominate an outfield player to speak to the referee in certain situations.

“But if our goalkeeper runs 50 yards to talk to the referee, then you are in danger of getting a yellow card.”

Ismael criticised the decision not to book Vardy for a second time.

Asked if Vardy was lucky to stay on the pitch, the Hornets coach said: “Yes, very lucky,

“It’s a clear foul on Hoedt. Just after, it’s exactly the same, but a yellow card for our player. It was a strange decision.

“But we needed to be more ruthless in the game.”

Jamie Vardy came off the bench to earn Championship leaders Leicester their first victory in three matches, scoring twice in a 2-0 win over Watford.

It had looked like being a half of frustration for the former Premier League Golden Boot winner, after he somehow missed an open goal from four yards out in the 74th minute.

But he called on all of his experience to make sure he was in the right spot just two minutes later to score from close range after Jannik Vestergaard’s header had been parried by Watford goalkeeper Daniel Bachmann.

Vardy then sealed the game three minutes into stoppage time when he was brought down by Bachmann as the Leicester striker raced into the penalty area.

It was a challenge that earned the goalkeeper a second yellow card as he had been booked 10 minutes earlier. Vardy took the spot-kick himself and converted it decisively as defender Ryan Porteus took over in goal.

The result eased the tension among the home fans after Enzo Maresca’s side had failed to score in their previous two games. But, the longer the match went on, the more likely Leicester were to score, and so it proved.

Watford had been content to soak up Leicester’s pressure and try to catch them on the break.

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall was City’s biggest threat throughout. After 10 minutes, he found space on the left and delivered a cross into the six-yard box, but none of his team-mates could get on to the end of it as Watford cleared their lines.

Dewsbury-Hall came close in the 29th minute after Kasey McAteer tapped a free-kick to him. The Leicester midfielder shot from 20 yards out, but his effort flew just wide.

Just before half-time, Dewsbury-Hall delivered a cross to the far post but Bachmann smothered McAteer’s chance on the goal-line.

Kelechi Iheanacho picked out Stephy Mavididi after 52 minutes, but his first-time shot only found the side netting, with the Leicester forward clearly annoyed with himself for failing to take advantage of the opening.

Maresca decided to make changes up front, introducing Vardy and Abdul Fatawu as substitutes. But when the two combined to create an opening, Vardy blazed his shot over the bar.

Again, Dewsbury-Hall came close to breaking the deadlock with 20 minutes to go when he turned Ryan Andrews in the Watford area, only to see his left-foot shot strike the near post.

Leicester launched a series of attacks and defender Vestergaard’s header landed on the roof of the net from Ricardo Pereira’s cross.

Vardy missed a clear chance after Mavididi’s run carved out the chance but the former England striker made up for that just minutes later though when Leicester finally got the goal they deserved.

That forced Watford to look for an equaliser and Porteus brought a save from Leicester goalkeeper Mads Hermansen with the visitors’ only shot on target.

Proud Middlesbrough boss Michael Carrick hailed his players for executing their game plan to perfection in a “big win” over Championship leaders Leicester.

Boro usually play possession football but had to change their approach for the visit of the Foxes, who dominated the ball at the Riverside but failed to find a breakthrough against Carrick’s stubborn and organised side.

And after frustrating Enzo Maresca’s visitors, Boro snatched the win late on thanks to Sam Greenwood’s moment of magic. The Leeds loanee scored his fourth goal in six games with a stunning free-kick.

“It was a big win,” said delighted Carrick. “They are a really good team and we knew that.

“Individually, collectively, how they’re coached, they’re a very good team and it’s not an accident that they are where they are in the league.

“We showed a different side to ourselves today with a lot of the out-of-possession work. It was really good pressing and really good defensively. They test you, you have to close certain spaces for the whole game, you have to concentrate for the whole game and that was a major factor.

“The boys got the game plan off to a tee and actually, the few chances we did give away were from us giving the ball away, which we don’t normally do. That’s one of those things though.

“It was an immense effort and I’m so proud of the boys.”

Greenwood is proving himself to be a key player for Middlesbrough and Carrick said of his match winner: “I kind of had a feeling as he stepped up, I fancied him because it looked like it was set up just at the right spot for him.

“It’s a hell of a free-kick. There are not many people who can pull that off, but he’s got that in his locker consistently. It’s a real threat and a real weapon for us.”

Despite a second successive Championship defeat, with Ipswich now level on points, Leicester boss Maresca was not overly concerned and said his players paid the price for missed chances.

Jannik Vestergaard went close in the first half but was denied by a brilliant save from Seny Dieng, before City tried to turn the screw after the break. The closest they came to breaking the deadlock was when Kelechi Iheanacho hit a post 10 minutes from time, before Greenwood claimed the winner three minutes later.

Maresca said: “I think I have been quite clear, we created many chances and many situations where we should score but when you miss, miss, miss and they score a fantastic goal, that’s football.

“It’s a moment where you create but don’t take your chance and the opposite, they score a fantastic goal. It is what it is.

“To be honest I thought we were in control of the game, created five or six clear chances and many situations where we missed the last pass. The players are annoyed because we lost and it’s normal to be like that.”

Leicester will be without Harry Winks for their first game back after the international break against Watford after the midfielder picked up his fifth yellow card of the season.

Maresca said: “For sure Harry will be a big miss but for many games he’s been waiting for one more yellow.”

Championship leaders Leicester suffered their second successive 1-0 defeat after Sam Greenwood settled a tight game with a late stunner to send Middlesbrough into the international break on a high.

Enzo Maresca’s side lost to Leeds last week and Greenwood – on loan at Boro from Elland Road – hit a brilliant free-kick seven minutes from time to lift Michael Carrick’s Boro up to 10th in the table, just two points outside the top six.

Leicester are now only top on goal difference following Ipswich’s win over Swansea.

The Foxes had looked the more likely winners for long spells at the Riverside but could not force a way through Middlesbrough’s organised backline.

There was not much to separate the sides in a hard-fought first half, with both keepers making brilliant saves.

Leicester dominated possession in the opening stages but it was Boro who created the better of the early chances, with Josh Coburn – who bagged a brace in last week’s 3-3 draw at Plymouth – twice going close.

Although the home side did a good job of restricting Leicester, the Foxes did have two good first-half opportunities to break the deadlock.

Maresca’s side were almost gifted an opener when Isaiah Jones’ attempted backpass was intercepted by Kelechi Iheanacho, who stung the hands of home goalkeeper Seny Dieng.

And just after the half-hour mark, Dieng again denied the leaders, making a superb one-handed save to keep out Jannik Vestergaard’s header after a corner from the left.

In the dying seconds of the opening period, it was the turn of Leicester keeper Mads Hermansen. First he got down to his left to tip a low Matt Crooks shot around a post. And from the resulting corner, he clawed out a Dael Fry header that looked destined for the top corner.

Leicester tried to turn the screw in the second half and substitute Abdul Fatawu bounced over a volley from close in after good work down the left from Stephy Mavididi.

Mavididi then had a chance of his own but dragged his left-footed shot wide of the far post, before Iheanacho was gifted an opportunity after a Dieng mistake, only for the keeper to make amends with a fine stop.

Iheanacho beat Dieng with his next chance with just over 10 minutes to play, only to see his delicate chip bounce back off the near post. And moments later, against the run of play, Boro scored what proved to be the winner.

There was initially some anger inside the Riverside when referee Oliver Langford pulled back play for a foul on Greenwood instead of playing the advantage with the home side in the attack and with men over.

But Greenwood lifted himself off the deck to curl home a beautiful free-kick into Hermansen’s top corner.

Leeds manager Daniel Farke felt his side’s 1-0 victory at Championship leaders Leicester was a reward for a performance of “bravery and courage”.

Georginio Rutter’s 57th-minute goal was enough to make sure Leeds closed in on Ipswich in second place, and condemn Leicester to their second home defeat of the season.

Farke praised an impressive display from Leeds, who took the game to Leicester early on and produced what was a statement win at the King Power Stadium.

“We were brave and went for it with courage as a side who have been unbeaten for so long,” said the Leeds manager.

“It was a complex performance on the field, but we stayed disciplined and kept them to areas where they couldn’t hurt us. I believed in my players and that they could dominate the game.

“You could see the goal coming in the second half, it was a deserved win, we had the better chances.

“The only thing Georginio needed to improve was his goal tally. This was a decisive goal and a sign of quality.”

Farke highlighted the fact that Leeds’ players celebrated with goalkeeper Illan Meslier after the game.

The Frenchman produced a superb save to keep out a stoppage-time header from Leicester’s Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall.

“If you want to achieve something special, you need unity,” added the German coach. “That is why the players celebrated Illan’s save. He is a diamond, if he continues to produce performances like this we are definitely on the right path, I think he is the best keeper in the league.

“I also felt that Glen Kamara had his best game in a white shirt.

“For us at the moment, the table is not important. Whatever the outcome here, everything would be possible for both sides. But it was a massive three points for us, a great boost. It was a good night for us.

“But Leicester are such a good side, I’m sure at the end of the season they’ll be in a top position.”

Farke admitted he was “disappointed” to be shown a yellow card for protesting against referee Dean Whitestone’s decision to wave away appeals after Crysencio Summerville went down under pressure from Ricardo Pereira.

“It was only my second yellow card in over 200 games in English football,” he said. “I was a bit disappointed, for me it was definitely a foul. Was it a penalty or a free-kick and a red card.  He didn’t whistle anything, it was a decisive moment.”

Leicester had been aiming for a  10th successive win, but they remain 11 points clear of Leeds in third spot.

Abdul Fatawu hit the crossbar in the first half, but Leicester managed only one effort on target during the game.

“I’m happy with the performance, we expected this match in terms of intensity,” said Leicester manager Enzo Maresca.

“They are a very good team, dangerous and good technically. We cannot win all the games. Overall I am happy, defeat is part of the process. It’s a case of what we can do better, and for sure, we can do some things better.

“I felt we deserved something more from the game.”

Maresca said he felt that, while Leeds took the three points, it had been Sunderland in the previous home game that had offered more in the way of tempo.

“Sunderland were more aggressive and more consistent,” said the Italian. “They started in minute one and finished in minute 95.

“Leeds started with intensity in the first half, and they dropped in the last minutes. We were in control for the last half hour. For me, the team that showed more intensity was Sunderland.”

Georginio Rutter earned Leeds a 1-0 victory against Sky Bet Championship leaders Leicester as Daniel Farke’s side took another step towards challenging the top two.

The result still leaves Leicester 11 points clear of Leeds in third place, but this will be seen as a statement victory against a side who have dominated the division this season.

Abdul Fatawu hit the crossbar in the first half, and Leeds goalkeeper Illan Meslier produced a superb save to keep out a stoppage-time header from Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall. But Leicester had just one shot on target while suffering their second home defeat of the campaign.

Leicester, five points clear at the top, had been chasing a 10th successive victory and were looking to equal the best-ever start to a second tier season since Bristol City in the 1905-06 season.

But Leeds took on Enzo Maresca’s side head-on. They were rewarded when Rutter netted after 57 minutes with a goal that proved to be the winner.

Leicester found themselves under pressure early on, something they have not been used to at the King Power Stadium this season.

But Leeds, who were also relegated from the Premier League last season, caused Leicester problems and looked in confident mood.

Joel Piroe carved out space in the Leicester area after only two minutes, but he curled his shot wide of the target.

Maresca’s side began to find some momentum and the game suddenly switched from one end to the other as Fatawu raced in from the right and unleashed a powerful shot which shook the crossbar.

Leeds immediately moved into the Leicester area and Crysencio Summerville went down under pressure from Leicester’s Ricardo Pereira.

Referee Dean Whitestone waved away all appeals, much to Farke’s anger.  He made his feelings known in the technical area, with his protests seeing him shown a yellow card.

Leeds continued to put pressure on Leicester after the break and goalkeeper Mads Hermansen could only parry a Piroe shot, but there was no-one to take advantage of the loose ball.

Leeds who broke the deadlock when a Daniel James corner was met by Sam Byram’s header, which was pushed out by Hermansen. The Dane may have got lucky moments earlier, but this time the ball fell into Rutter’s path and he scored from close range for his third of the season.

Maresca had been planning to take off Jamie Vardy and replace him with Kelechi Iheanacho as the goal went in, a move which then happened with Leicester a goal down.

Leeds threatened a second with 17 minutes to go as James broke clear, but his low drive was smothered by Hermansen.

Leicester laid siege to the Leeds goal in the closing stages, but could not find the equaliser.

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