Jamie Vardy hit a 90-minute winner to grab a 2-1 Leicester win at Sheffield United, leaving Chris Wilder’s men in all sorts of trouble in the Premier League
Ayoze Perez fired Leicester ahead of him (24) after grabbing a deflected shot from Marc Albrighton but Oli McBurnie scored his first goal of the season minutes later (26), heading in from a corner.
Leicester’s performance started in the second period but they could have had the game wrapped up as Vardy and James Maddison hit the post in the first half.
The Blades were minutes away from their second point of the season but Vardy, who grew up a Sheffield Wednesday fan, raced clear of Maddison’s pass with one of the last attacks of the game and grabbed the Foxes top points.
The Blades remain unbeaten at the foot of the Premier League table and have taken just one point out of the last 42 available in the league.
Sheff Utd: Ramsdale (7), Baldock (6), Basham (6), Egan (6), Bryan (6), Lowe (5), Berge (6), Fleck (5), Lundstram (6), McBurnie (8), Burke (6)
Subs Not Used: Norwood (6), Brewster (6)
Leicester: Schmeichel (7), Justin (7), Fofana (6), Evans (6), Fuchs (5), Albrighton (7), Tielemans (7), Mendy (6), Perez (7), Maddison (7), Vardy (8)
Subs Not Used: Patience (6), Iheanacho (5)
Man of the match: Jamie Vardy
How Vardy Punished Outstanding Blades …
With Sheffield falling within the Tier 3 category of government restrictions, United could not welcome any supporters in to help their cause. Teams have found it easier to settle in without the usual chaotic atmosphere at Bramall Lane and Leicester getting off their feet quickly.
Maddison found plenty of space as the Blades defended deep and started an attack that ended with Vardy blasting a fierce effort back off the woodwork on 10 minutes.
Leicester kept their weight in control of the ball in midfield and it was no surprise to see the opening goal coming with 24 minutes played. Albrighton joined the onslaught of his right wing back role and fired a blocked shot to Perez’s path, which celebrated a return to the team with a powerful finish that Aaron Ramsdale couldn’t keep out.
With confidence low within the ranks, a response seemed unlikely but they managed to turn Leicester and win a corner down the left. Leicester had already conceded six goals from set piece situations and became six at seven when McBurnie rose top to divert a clever header to the far corner. It was his first goal of the season of his 20th goal attempt.
Max Lowe was fortunate not to receive a second yellow card just before the break as he cynically tripped Perez who was charging towards goal. From the free kick, Maddison went into space about 18 yards out smacking the same post that Vardy hit earlier in the half with another rasping effort.
Wilder Lowe withdrew at the break and the introduction of Ben Osborn down the left seemed to give the host a better balance in their defensive shape. Leicester continued to dominate the ball but space was now limited.
You sensed that the cards for the Blades might have had some cutting and grabbing that had some luck this season but their threat in forward areas remained minimal. Only McBurnie’s header from Leicester’s other troubled set goal but this one sailed over the crossbar.
Youri Tielemans nearly grabbed a lower catch by Ramsdale on 68 minutes but the goalkeeper bravely responded in time to challenge the ball away.
The match seemed to be bubbling out but then Vardy came to the party in dramatic fashion.
Vardy, who loved scoring in this game last season when the Foxes also won 2-1, kept it cool when he was through one-on-one and beat Ramsdale with a confident right foot finish. His wild celebration drew a yellow card after he destroyed the corner flag but his mood was of little importance.
The Wilder side have now made the worst start to a season in the Premier League and remain rooted to the bottom of the table with just one point from 11 games.
Man of the match: Jamie Vardy
Sheffield United fans can’t catch a break this season. Just when things couldn’t have reached more frustrating levels, seeing Vardy drive away celebrating a last-minute winner at Bramall Lane heightened the misery for everyone involved in the club. He could hardly have kicked for the previous 89 minutes – apart from breaking an effort against a post – but he was ready for action when Maddison slotted through on goal.
- Sheffield United have become only the ninth different team in English Football League history to lose 10 (or more) of their first 11 league games to a season, and only the third in the top flight after Newcastle in 1977 -78 and Manchester United in 1930-31.
- Only Liverpool (19) and Manchester City (18) have won more away matches in the Premier League since Brendan Rodgers took charge of Leicester than the Foxes (14).
- Thanks to late winner Vardy, Leicester midfielder James Maddison has provided his Premier League first-aid in 363 days, since doing so against Aston Villa in December last year (56th created chance since).
- Vardy has become only the third player to score in five consecutive Premier League away games in Yorkshire, after Wayne Rooney (2002-2013) and Harry Kane (2014-2020).
Sheffield United are having a trip to Southampton next Sunday, live on Sky Sports. Meanwhile, Leicester still have work to do to boost their Europa League group on Thursday against AEK Athens before welcoming Brighton in the Premier League next Saturday.