Leicester deal blow to Spurs' title hopes
Man Utd brace for Leeds test
published : 20 Dec 2020 at 23:45
LONDON: Leicester put a major dent in Tottenham's Premier League title challenge on Sunday, climbing to second in the table as Manchester United prepared to resume their historic rivalry with Leeds.
Spurs were top of the table before their midweek clash with Liverpool but now find themselves six points adrift of the champions after a damaging 2-0 defeat at home.
Vardy put away-day specialists Leicester ahead with the final kick of the first half after Brendan Rodgers's side were awarded a penalty.
Serge Aurier barged Wesley Fofana over and, after referee Craig Pawson watched the incident again on the pitchside monitor, the Foxes striker drilled home his spot-kick.
Spurs had a huge escape early in the second half as James Maddison had a goal ruled out for the most marginal of offsides.
But Leicester doubled their lead just before the hour mark via an own goal.
Vardy capitalised on some bad defending by Moussa Sissoko and his header across goal deflected off Toby Alderweireld and into the net.
The win -- Leicester's sixth in seven away games -- lifts them to within four points of Jurgen Klopp's men after 14 matches and will have Foxes fans dreaming again.
Just five points separate the 2016 champions from Chelsea in eighth spot but Liverpool looked ominous in a 7-0 demolition of Crystal Palace on Saturday.
In the early kick-off on Sunday, Sheffield United were cruelly denied their first Premier League win of the season as Danny Welbeck scored a late equaliser for Brighton in a 1-1 draw.
Chris Wilder's bottom-placed team looked set to claim all three points at the Amex Stadium despite being reduced to 10 men late in the first half.
Substitute Jayden Bogle marked his Premier League debut with the opening goal for Sheffield United in the 63rd minute.
But Welbeck's goal left United with just two points from 14 games -- eight points from safety.
Man Utd v Leeds rivalry
Manchester United are hosting Leeds United in the 1630 GMT kick-off -- the first Premier League clash in 16 years between the bitter rivals.
United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said he was relishing the match against Marcelo Bielsa's side, who returned to the top flight in July.
Leeds have attracted rave reviews for their thrilling style under the Argentine and will travel to Manchester full of confidence after a 5-2 thumping of Newcastle on Wednesday.
United are also buoyant after coming from behind to beat Sheffield United 3-2 on Thursday.
"I can't wait," said Solskjaer. "It's been too long, of course. I know how much it means for our supporters, I know how much it means for our club.
"It's a different type of Leeds coming up with a coach that's really done a great job with them and will test us to the limit."
Solskjaer said he had enjoyed his regular clashes with Leeds as a player.
"There were fiery games, tackles flying in, players from both teams who were winners," he said. "We had a few fights, of course."
United are in good spirits after five wins in their past six Premier League matches but their poor form at home will give the visitors hope -- they have won just a single match at Old Trafford.
Struggling West Brom, with new manager Sam Allardyce at the helm, host local rivals Aston Villa in the late evening kick-off.