Claudio Ranieri Post Match Discussing Leicester City’s Champions League Debut

BRUGGE, BELGIUM - SEPTEMBER 14: Marc Albrighton of Leicester City applauds as he stands amongst his team mates during the UEFA Champions League match between Club Brugge and Leicester City at Jan Breydel Stadium on September 14, 2016 in Brugge, West-Vlaanderen. (Photo by Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images)

Bruges, Belgium – Premier League holders Leicester City made easy work of Club Brugge in their Champions League debut. The visitors seized chances on their way to an easy first win, and sit atop Group G.

Leicester City Flying High After Champions League Debut

It was always going to a be Cinderella story with Leicester City in the Champions League. Despite outlasting the big clubs in the Premier League last season, the naysers are still skeptical at how good the club is. Truthfully, there is the feeling that so many are waiting to say “I told you so”. And after the Champions League draw slotted Leicester in what many feel is a very weak Group G with Porto, Copenhagen and the aforementioned Club Brugge, some pundits have changed their tune.

After a poor performance recently against Liverpool, it was an important turnaround match against a much weaker Club Brugge. In the post-match interview, manager Claudio Ranieri noted the importance of a strong showing from his side:

“It was an important win for us. After the Liverpool defeat it was a very, very important start. And to win as well, we needed to score very soon. That gave us more confidence during all the match.”

It didn’t take long for Leicester to find the back of the net. Club Brugge made its first of three critical errors when keeper Ludovic Butelle came off his line to play a long throw-in. Midfielder Hans Vanaken headed the ball instead. The ball landed in a good enough position for Marc Albrighton to find the goal.

The second mistake came when Jamie Vardy was taken down on the edge of the box. In truth, midfielder Timmy Simons was fortunate not to get booked. Riyad Mahrez expertly cleared the wall, scoring to the right of the outstretched arms of the keeper.

Vardy’s pace and ball control caused the third costly blunder for the Belgian side. After Vardy knocked the ball past the keeper, he was taken down with a trailing leg. Mahrez’s slow approach had the keeper commit and the ball was slotted neatly down the middle.

It was a fantastic match for Leicester. It reminded us how they were able to have so much success last year, and reaffirmed their right to play on Europe’s biggest stage for club football. They were strong in defending, and pounced on every opportunity on the attack.

 

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