Leicester vs Aston Villa: Little clarity was gained in the muddled mid-table mess, as the Foxes and Villans played to a scoreless draw at the King Power Stadium on Saturday.
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The Foxes (42 points) began the weekend 9th in the Premier League table and have since slipped to 10th following Newcastle’s fourth straight victory on Saturday. Aston Villa (37 points), meanwhile, remain 15th, still very much within striking distance of the top-10.
Leicester vs Aston Villa final score, stats, results
Final score: Leicester 0, Aston Villa 0
Goal scorers: Leicester (None), Aston Villa (None)
Shots: Leicester 5, Aston Villa 11
Shots on target: Leicester 2, Aston Villa 3
Possession: Leicester 64%, Aston Villa 36%
2 things we learned – Leicester vs Aston Villa
1. Foxes focused on Thursday: Despite holding 64 percent of possession in the game, Leicester managed just five shots, including just three in the first 75 minutes. Given his team selection, Brendan Rodgers didn’t appear to be looking past Aston Villa as the Foxes prepare for Jose Mourinho’s Roma in the semifinals of the Europa Conference League on Thursday, but their painfully slow tempo and risk-averse passing painted a different picture. They’ll likely be on the back foot for a fair portion of that tie, so it makes sense that Rodgers will have drilled his squad on smart possession and sound defensive transitions, using Saturday’s game as a low-stakes test of their readiness.
2. A solid squad without difference-makers: On one hand, Aston Villa are in the race for a top-half finish in the same season they sold Jack Grealish to Manchester City. On the other hand, Danny Ings, Leon Bailey and Emi Buendia, the three players signed with the $140 million received for Grealish, have combined for just 8 goals and 11 assists in 3,911 minutes this season. None of the three are anywhere near the 2,000-minute mark (Ings is the closest, at 1,602) due to injuries and poor form throughout the campaign. And yet, they are in no danger of being relegated and could still finish in the top half. The same reason this season has been a slog might also be the biggest cause for optimism next season.