- Okazaki scores twice
- King, Mahrez grab a goal each
- Four wins on the spin for Leicester
Leicester City beat Southampton 4-1 at St Mary’s Stadium on Wednesday with former Saints boss Claude Puel seeing his side put on a show during his first return to Southampton.
Saints pulled one back through Maya Yoshida early in the second half as the hosts threatened an unlikely comeback but another devastating counter from Leicester saw Okazaki finish Southampton off.
With the win Leicester are in eighth place and five points off the top four with just one defeat in 12 games, while Saints have 18 points and are just four points above the relegation zone.
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Saints started the game well as Maya Yoshida went close from two corners but Leicester always looked lively on the break and Jamie Vardy almost found Shinji Okazaki early on.
The home side didn’t heed that warning and Mahrez made it 1-0 to Leicester with a fine finish as he ran towards the box after two Saints players slipped up trying to tackle him, then struck low into the far corner from 25 yards out. Another beauty for the Mahrez collection.
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Leicester took control of the game after going ahead with Okazaki’s deflected shot heading towards the top corner but Fraser Forster tipped wide.
Moments later the Japanese international through he had made it 2-0 but his shot was cleared off the line by Mario Lemina. Vardy was then brilliantly denied by Forster but soon after it was 2-0 as Christian Fuchs volleyed towards goal and Okazaki cleaned up in front of the net.
And it got worse for Saints as the Foxes flooded forward and from a set piece center back Harry Maguire whipped in a great cross for King to make it 3-0. Charlie Austin had a shot on target which Kasper Schmeichel beat away but that was as good as it got for Saints. A stunning first half for Leicester.
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Saints were stunned and Manolo Gabbiadini came on at half time to try and salvage some pride.
They at least scored. A corner from the right found Yoshida and his header towards goal missed Tadic on the line and went in. 3-1. It should have been 3-2 soon after but somehow Schmeichel denied Austin from close range after a fine cross from Ryan Bertrand.
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Any hope of a remarkable Saints comeback was extinguished with 20 minutes to go as a poor cross-field ball from Cedric found Mahrez who played the ball to Vardy and his cross was swept home by Okazaki for his second and Leicester’s fourth goal of the game. Game over.