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10-man Leicester makes 2-0 lead stick

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  • Maddison gets first PL goal
  • Wolves concede own goal
  • Wolves finish vs. 10, again

Jamie Vardy was sent off for a reckless studs-up challenge for Leicester, but Wolves couldn’t find their way back from a two-goal deficit in a 2-0 loss at King Power Stadium on Saturday.

Matt Doherty’s own goal was followed up by a James Maddison goal for the Foxes, who get their first points of the year.

Wolves host Man City next week while Leicester visits Southampton.

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A promising third minute break for Wolves ended with Joao Moutinho smashing a shot off the crossbar.

A sixth minute corner kick followed, but was cleared by the Foxes.

Raul Jimenez had the next best chance, a bit off target when his shot zipped toward Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel.

A speculative Leicester cross was lined up for a headed clearance by Doherty but took a slight deflection off a teammate’s head before the right back thumped it inside his own far post.

Maddison made it 2-0 in the 45th minute with a bouncing shot just outside the arc for his first Premier League goal.

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[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Schmeichel made a nice low stop on Jimenez moments after Leicester had Wolves a sixes and sevens at the other end.

Wolves then were up a man for the second-straight game, going studs up into Doherty’s knee. It was ugly, and deserved.

Ruben Neves lashed a shot that Schmeichel slapped away with six minutes to play.

Pogba leads Man Utd to winning start

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  • Pogba clear Man of the Match
  • Lukaku, Martial start on bench
  • Foxes winless at Old Trafford since 1998

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Manchester United’s Paul Pogba converted a third minute penalty against Leicester City to help the Red Devils to a 2-1 win at Old Trafford on Friday in the first match of the Premier League’s 2018-19 season.

Luke Shaw scored a sensational goal in the 83rd minute to secure the win for United.

Jamie Vardy scored a back post goal in stoppage time to ruin David De Gea‘s clean sheet.

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Alexis Sanchez’s early shot was blocked by the raised arm of Daniel Amartey, and Pogba left no doubt with his penalty attempt against Kasper Schmeichel.

Wilfred Ndidi’s deflected shot was collected by De Gea in the 15th minute, as Leicester gained a foothold but mostly tried to defy United’s possession.

James Maddison had the game’s best chance shy of the penalty, but a diving De Gea slapped it away with his right hand.

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[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Eric Bailly made an outstanding tackle on Kelechi Iheanacho inside the 18 early in the second half.

Pogba sent a delightful through ball to put Alexis Sanchez 1v1, and the Chilean laid off for Juan Mata. The Spaniard’s shot was turned wide of the goal but a goal kick was awarded to Leicester.

Romelu Lukaku entered for Marcus Rashford in the 67th.

Leicester looked prepared to make Manchester United pay for its inability to find an insurance goal, but De Gea stopped Demarai Gray‘s 76th minute shot.

Lukaku should’ve made it 2-0 when Sanchez slid him square, but Schmeichel made a sliding deflection of the Belgian’s point blank shot.

Shaw did register United’s second goal, a mis-touch freeing him to side volley a left-footed shot past Schmeichel.

Vardy pulled one back for the Foxes in stoppage time. De Gea was mystified by Ricardo Pereira‘s cross, and Vardy was at the back post to punch in a rebound off the iron.

PL Watch Live: Man United v Leicester City

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It’s finally here. The Premier League season is set to get underway.

The Premier League scriptwriters have given us a heck of an opener, with drama-filled Jose Mourinho and Manchester United hosting 2015-2016 Premier League champions Leicester City (Watch live, 2:45 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com), who have a Riyad Mahrez-size hole to fill in their lineup.

WATCH LIVE ONLINE, HERE

After complaining for nearly the entire preseason that Mourinho was without half (or more!) of his squad, he’s starting some reinforcements on short rest. Paul Pogba captains the side while Marcus Rashford starts up top along with Alexis Sanchez. Matteo Darmian and Luke Shaw, two players who have been heavily rumored for a move away from Old Trafford, both start at outside back.

Leicester meanwhile continue to lean on captain (Wes) Morgan, with Man United target Harry Maguire starting alongside him. Jamie Vardy makes an appearance on the bench while former Columbus Crew trainee (and Manchester City academy product) Kelechi Iheanacho starts with Demarai Gray for Leicester. Without Mahrez, Leicester needs to find another goal creator. Perhaps Iheanacho or new signing James Maddison could be that player.


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PL Preview: Man Utd vs. Leicester City

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  • United took four of six points last season
  • Man Utd leads all-time 64W-29D-33L
  • Foxes last won at Old Trafford in 1998

The Premier League season begins at Old Trafford, where Jose Mourinho’s unsettled Manchester United hosts Leicester City on Friday (Watch live at 3 p.m. on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

Mourinho did not get most of his desired transfer additions, adding Diogo Dalot and Fred, and has several World Cup stars who may not play, including Paul Pogba, Romelu Lukaku, Jesse Lingard, Marouane Fellaini, and Ashley Young.

If they play, Mourinho isn’t expecting a ton. From ManUtd.com:

“If they play tomorrow, they play after four days, so that’s why I’m saying one thing is what you can expect from the players with a proper preseason and another thing is what you can expect from players with three or four days’ training.”

Foxes boss Claude Puel isn’t sure whether he’ll hand starts to stars Jamie Vardy and Harry Maguire, who are still getting back to speed after post-World Cup vacations.

What they’re saying

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho on his title hopes“I know the words you want me to say. I think by the end of November, December you won’t need words, you will see by then which teams are candidates to win the Premier League.”

Leicester’s Jamie Vardy on signing a new deal“The journey that me, the team and the Club have been on in the past few years has been incredible. Going into the new season, it’s an exciting time for Leicester City and I’m delighted to be part of it.”

Prediction

United is going to be just fine, though things may be a little dicey against an industrious Wilfred Ndidi and Co. Ultimately, Alexis Sanchez is the difference as United runs out 2-0 winners.

Top Five transfer moves that did not materialize

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Many players ticketed for new locales stayed put past Thursday’s Premier League summer transfer deadline.

[ MORE: Full list of Thursday’s deals ]

While Eden Hazard staying at Chelsea is no doubt huge, it only affected one Premier League club. Here are five moves which could’ve swung momentum for two clubs in England.

5. Jordan Pickford stays put at Everton — The English backstop saved the Toffees’ proverbial bacon on many occasions last season, and was a massive part of England’s World Cup run. The only question is how he fares when not under siege for the first time in four years.

4. Willian doesn’t get Mourinho reunion, stays at Chelsea — There’s a chance that Maurizio Sarri won’t be able to keep the Brazilian happy at Stamford Bridge, but that’s difficult to believe given his history of exciting play at Napoli.

3. Man Utd fails to land Harry Maguire, who stays with Leicester City — Rumors of a world record move to Manchester United did not materialize for the defender, which doesn’t shore up the Red Devils’ back line and keeps Leicester steady in a window which already saw Riyad Mahrez skip town.

2. Ruben Loftus-Cheek not leaving Chelsea on loan — Let’s hope Sarri has plans for the young Englishman, who was rock solid when healthy for Palace last season.

  1. Wilfried Zaha staying at Crystal Palace — This was huge, even looking beyond Crystal Palace’s 0-9 record when the Ivorian winger doesn’t suit up for the Eagles. He’s a game-changing forward, and would’ve potentially been the biggest attack to swap homes this summer.