Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew: Leicester were more like themselves today


Vardy, who scored 24 goals in last season's title-winning campaign, came on as a second-half replacement as Ahmed Musa, Shinji Okazaki and Christian Fuchs wrapped up the Foxes' first Premier League victory for over a month.

Initially it was Palace who were the more threatening though and Christian Benteke's powerful header cannoned off the crossbar with Leicester slow to get into their stride.

"It is a long time since I scored in the Premier League, so I was very happy and now I want to keep going with this spirit". Leicester have now gone 20 league games at home without defeat and, while nobody expects them to win the league again, this performance should kill off any premature talk of a potential relegation battle.

Austrian defender Christian Fuchs sealed the points in the closing stages with his first goal for the Foxes and Yohan Cabaye's late reply was no consolation for Palace.

Pardew, whose team are ninth after being beaten at home by West Ham United last weekend, is expecting another tough contest away to a Leicester side he says is full of "character".

Ranieri ensured a cake was present in the changing room following his 65th birthday on Thursday and after what he dubbed their most complete display as champions, the Leicester team will be able to tuck in.

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Claudio Ranieri proclaimed Leicester's victory over Crystal Palace as their best performance of the Premier League season.

"But then they cranked it up for the last 20 minutes of the first half and we struggled to hold onto them". "I think [their league form] is natural". They have already lost more matches than they did a year ago and desperately need to turn things around if they even want to make the top four.

Schmeichel made a smart one-handed stop to deny Zaha but the keeper was powerless to prevent Cabaye slotting home from a Zaha cross with five minutes remaining. This was the real Leicester.

The match is now one nil to the home side, at half time.

And on 64 minutes Okazaki doubled the Foxes' lead to give Ranieri some real satisfaction.

Ranieri was criticised for resting players during last week's 3-0 thumping by Chelsea, leaving Riyad Mahrez and Slimani out of the starting line-up at Stamford Bridge.