No Haaland… Kevin de Bruyne’s rocket beat Leicester City

No Haaland… Kevin de Bruyne’s rocket beat Leicester City

Kevin de Bruyne sent Manchester City to the top of the Premier League on Saturday with a magnificent free-kick against Leicester that resulted in a 1-0 victory.

Erling Haaland was unavailable for Pep Guardiola’s squad at the King Power Stadium after failing to recover from an ankle injury.

De Bruyne ensured that the champions did not miss the prolific striker by scoring with a brilliant set-piece in the second half.

Sunday’s victory over Nottingham Forest pushed City one point ahead of second-place Arsenal, who visit Nottingham Forest.

Since their debilitating defeat at Liverpool, City have rebounded with consecutive league victories to demonstrate their resolve to win their fifth championship in six years.

Leicester is one position above the relegation zone after suffering its first loss in four matches.

After coming from Borussia Dortmund, Haaland had started all but one game this season, scoring 22 goals in all competitions.

Guardiola was reticent to discuss Haaland’s absence, but revealed that his prolific star had “a bit of a fever, was exhausted, and must also recover from his injury.”

As a result of Haaland’s absence, Julian Alvarez made his second league start of the season, and City appeared unaffected in a lively start.

Danny Ward was forced to save Ilkay Gundogan’s header before De Bruyne delivered a corner kick to Rodri, whose header was saved by the Leicester goalkeeper.

Bernardo Silva then challenged Ward from just inside the penalty area as the City onslaught accelerated.

It took Leicester 25 minutes to generate a shot, with Harvey Barnes’s attempt ending City goalkeeper Ederson’s streak of inactivity.

De Bruyne’s long-distance shot was too close to Ward, and Jack Grealish’s penalty appeal was denied after he fell dramatically under a challenge from Kieran Dewsbury-Hall.

Early in the second half, City maintained pressure as Rodri nearly missed a long-range attempt.

De Bruyne finally broke City’s scoring drought in the 49th minute after three consecutive away games without a goal.

The Belgian star took aim from 25 yards out and unleashed a magnificent free-kick that curled over the Leicester wall and sailed into the top corner via the post.

The Belgian midfielder’s 60th Premier League goal moved him into a tie for fourth place with David Silva on City’s all-time scoring chart for the league.

It was also the first direct free-kick goal scored by City in the Premier League since January 2021.

Ederson deflected Youri Tielemans’s fierce shot onto the crossbar, preventing Leicester from scoring an equalizer immediately.

Kelechi Iheanacho came off the bench and twice came close to tying the game with a snap-shot that whizzed just wide and a close-range attempt that was directly at Ederson.

John Stones’s header in stoppage time hit Ruben Dias and narrowly missed the goal, nearly allowing Leicester to salvage a point.

»No Haaland… Kevin de Bruyne’s rocket beat Leicester City«

↯↯↯Read More On The Topic On TDPel Media ↯↯↯

Also On TDPel Media