Leicester 0-0 Aston Villa: Player ratings as side play out underwhelming draw

23 April 2022 07:01

Leicester and Aston Villa played with decent energy in the Premier League on Saturday but a woeful lack of quality in the final third at the King Power Stadium kept the score-line at 0-0.

Both goalkeepers were largely untested as shots went flying wide and crosses were overhit, in a game which can only be described as 'scrappy' and 'a waste of my time'.

An end-to-end start saw Leon Bailey have the game's first big chance. Ollie Watkins got the better of Wesley Fofana and dragged the ball back to the Jamaica winger, who blazed his strike well over the bar.

Leicester slowly started to grow into the game, although the final ball just wasn't there for either team. The closest the Foxes came in the first half was 20 minutes in, when some excellent work from Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall gifted James Justin with a great opportunity which the right-back couldn't make the most of, following Bailey's lead and skying his shot.

The first half wasn't exactly boring, but both sides had just one shot on target and the highlight reel from the opening 45 minutes won't last longer than 30 seconds.

Villa began brightest in the second half, with Watkins threatening to cause so many problems. He was bested by Fofana for one chance before Caglar Soyuncu forced him to slice a decent chance across the six-yard box and away from goal.

Steven Gerrard's men had a lot of shots on goal in a few hectic scrambles as they did their best to try and wrestle their way into the driver's seat, but Kasper Schmeichel never really looked worried.

Just like the first half, it was Leicester who had most of the possession, but yet again, nothing was really happening. Dewsbury-Hall gave himself an inch of space on the edge of the box but, to sum up the 70 minutes that had passed by this point, he sent his effort high and wide.

With ten minutes to go, we nearly got something to enjoy as James Maddison's free-kick bent around the wall and drew a decent save from Emiliano Martinez, but it was the kind of shot you would expect any goalkeeper to save.

Similarly, Emiliano Buendia struck from range and had Schmeichel diving at full length, but he watched the ball fly wide of his post relatively comfortably.

Stoppage time was spent exchanging pointless fouls in a sadistic attempt to prolong this underwhelming encounter, but fortunately, the clock caught up with them and the referee brought things to a much-needed close.

You can't say these two teams didn't try to score, but the final-third action was about as poor as you'll find in the Premier League.

Leicester City vs Aston Villa player ratings

1. Leicester (4-1-4-1)

Vardy is back | OLI SCARFF/GettyImages

GK: Kasper Schmeichel - 6/10 -Barely involved in the first half but alert to make some decent saves in the second.

RB: James Justin - 7/10 - A regular threat down the right wing. Probably should have scored.

CB: Caglar Soyuncu - 6/10 - Not much to write about apart from a real nasty fall on his head late in the first half. Fortunately looked to be alright.

CB: Wesley Fofana - 6/10 - A little shaky up against Watkins and fortunate not to see an early effort punished by Bailey, but recovered well to best the Villa striker in the second 45.

LB: Timothy Castagne - 6/10 - Good energy to match Bailey's pace.

DM: Nampalys Mendy - 7/10 - A solid job of shielding Leicester's defence and marking Coutinho out of the game. A traditional destroyer.

RM: James Maddison - 6/10 - Some really nice free-kicks but largely felt wasted out on the wing. again. Better when he moved centrally late on.

CM: Youri Tielemans - 4/10 - Felt a bit lazy at times. Didn't have that cutting edge that you'd expect from him.

CM: Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall - 7/10 - Continues to be Leicester's best player. Created the best chance of the first half with some nice dribbling.

LM: Ademola Lookman - 4/10 - The odd half-dangerous moment but never really got into this game.

ST: Patson Daka - 3/10 - Eyewitnesses confirm he was actually playing.

SUB: Jamie Vardy (71' for Daka) - 5/10 - His return from injury was pretty much the highlight of this game.

SUB: Harvey Barnes (80' for Lookman) - 5/10 - Didn't really change much in his short cameo.

SUB: Ayoze Perez (86' for Tielemans) - N/A

2. Aston Villa (4-3-3)

Watkins put himself about | OLI SCARFF/GettyImages

GK: Emiliano Martinez - 6/10 - Kept himself alert but was never really threatened.

RB: Matty Cash - 5/10 - Had nothing to do defensively but didn't offer much going forwards either.

CB: Ezri Konsa - 4/10 - Looked absolutely petrified all game long even though Daka was never going to do anything to him.

CB: Tyrone Mings - 5/10 - Missed a decent chance late in the first half and seemed more bothered by getting in fights.

LB: Ashley Young - 6/10 - Put in a real shift to block whatever he could get his body in front of.

CM: John McGinn - 3/10 - Loves passing to the wrong team. Probably needs to stop that.

CM: Douglas Luiz - 5/10 - Had a tough time dealing with Leicester's numbers.

CM: Jacob Ramsey - 5/10 - Largely invisible but did pop up with some of the brightest moments for Villa. Needs to do that more often.

AM: Philippe Coutinho - 4/10 - Hardly touched the ball. Couldn't find space at all.

ST: Leon Bailey - 3/10 - Similarly as isolated. Didn't even show the sort of pace he's famous for.

ST: Ollie Watkins - 6/10 - Put in more effort than most of his attacking team-mates combined. Sloppy finishing but it's not easy doing the work of seven men.

SUB: Tim Iroegbunam (76' for Luiz) - 5/10 - No worse than his senior team-mates.

SUB: Emiliano Buendia (79' for Coutinho) - 6/10 - Flirted with a worldie to save this game but it wasn't to be. Villa's best player of the game.

SUB: Marvelous Nakamba (93' for Ramsey) - N/A

Source: 90min