Leicester 1-0 Copenhagen: Claudio Ranieri's men continue perfect Champions League start
By Charlotte Marsh
Last Updated: 19/10/16 8:40am
Leicester maintained their perfect start in the Champions League as they beat Copenhagen 1-0 on Tuesday evening.
The Foxes had won their two previous Group G games going into the match at the King Power Stadium, with Riyad Mahrez scoring his third goal in three European appearances to seal the three points.
It could have been 2-0 after Islam Slimani had a goal ruled offside in the second half, but Leicester saw out the game with relative ease as well as keeping a third consecutive clean sheet in the competition.
With Porto beating Club Brugge 2-1 in the other tie, Claudio Ranieri's men are now clear favourites at the top of Group G with nine points, followed by Copenhagen in second with four points.
Claudio Ranieri made four changes from the 3-0 loss to Chelsea at the weekend, with Mahrez and Slimani back in the starting line-up. The game began brightly with Kasper Schmeichel saving from Federico Santander before visiting goalkeeper Robin Olson raced from his box to head clear with Jamie Vardy bearing down on him.
But mostly, chances were at a premium in the first half, with Vardy just flashing a shot wide in the 19th minute and Wes Morgan heading past the post not long after. Vardy was involved again 16 minutes later as a messy clearance found him at the top of the box, but his mis-hit volley bobbled safely into the arms of Olson.
The spark the game needed came five minutes before the break as Mahrez netted his fourth goal of the season. Danny Drinkwater found Vardy on the left-hand side, and the striker's deep cross met the head of Slimani at the back post. He nodded the ball down into the path of the Algerian winger, who knocked home delightfully past Olson.
Copenhagen then sprang into life and could twice have equalised before half-time as Yussef Toutouh left fly from 25 yards but saw his effort rise over the bar after taking a nick off the head of Morgan. The resulting corner then fell into the path of Andreas Cornelius in the box who also headed just over the woodwork.
Leicester began the second period well, with Mahrez putting an effort into the crowd two minutes into the half after a good run from Vardy, before some fantastic work from the winger and Andy King saw Drinkwater shoot over the crossbar not long after.
Schmeichel - who was born in Copenhagen - had little to do in the second half but was nearly caught off-guard by Andreas Corneluis as he flicked on an Ankersen ball from a cleared corner, but the goalkeeper was down low to save.
Mahrez could have added a second in the 65th minute as he saw his shot from the top of the box blocked by Erik Johanssen - who had got back to mop up after a messy pass that set the Algeria international on his way - before Slimani had a goal ruled for offside four minutes later.
Marc Albrighton's pass found him in the middle of the box and he poked towards goal, seeing his effort pushed onto the crossbar by goalkeeper Olson before heading home the rebound - but the official had his flagged raised for offside and the goal was ruled out.
Copenhagen could have nicked an equaliser late on with Santander heading just over the bar in the 87th minute before Schmeichel made a world-class stop as added time was announced, keeping out an half volley from Cornelius with a stretching fingertip save.
The Danes could not find the breakthrough in the additional minutes and suffered their first defeat of the season, with Leicester now in a strong position to surprise once again and top their Champions League group.