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Leicester brush aside toothless Addicks
Leicester City stretched their unbeaten run to 14 games with a 3-0 win over Charlton Athletic this afternoon.
Goals from Jamie Vardy, Danny Drinkwater and David Nugent helped the hosts to another impressive home win which left the Addicks in the final relegation place.
Chris Powell made one change from the team that performed so impressively in Sheffield on Monday night.
Rhoys Wiggins was brought back into the side in place of Morgan Fox as Charlton went in search of back-to-back league wins for the first time this campaign.
Ben Hamer continued in goal for the visitors, with Wilson, Wiggins, Morrison and Wood named ahead of him.
Callum Harriott, Johnnie Jackson, Astrit Ajdarevic, Diego Poyet and Jordan Cousins made up the midfield, leaving Simon Church to operate as the lone striker for the second game in a row.
Nigel Pearson made one change for the hosts, as Riyad Mahrez was given his first start, replacing the injured Lloyd Dyer.
Otherwise it was the same side that beat Ipswich last Saturday as Leicester aimed to make it 14 games unbeaten.
It was the hosts who were ahead inside ten minutes.
The ball ran free in midfield, allowing Nugent to lead the counter attack.
He found the on-rushing Vardy who skipped over Wiggins’ challenge and slid his shot under Hamer and into the net.
Good work from Anthony Knockhaert down the left culminated in a dangerous cross soon after, but Hamer was alert and well placed to turn away from danger.
The home side continued to press their opponents, with Drinkwater and Knockhaert pulling the strings from midfield as Nugent and Vardy constantly looking dangerous up front.
The first chance for the visitors came soon after.
Morrison’s long ball forward evaded Wes Morgan and found Church, but the striker’s lob was parried away by Kasper Schmeichel.
Nugent then headed Knockhaert’s cross over at the other end as the hosts kept on the offensive in what was an impressive first half from the Foxes, Nugent’s shot was well saved by Hamer, but the Charlton defence didn’t react to the rebound and Drinkwater was first to the loose ball to fire into the net.
Drinkwater was then allowed time and space to drive at the visiting defence, but his shot was blocked by Hamer as the relentless pressure continued.
A rare half-chance for the hosts came about when Ajdarevic swung in a free-kick from the right.
The delivery was met by Richard Wood, but his header flew narrowly over.
Chris Powell introduced Marcus Tudgay and Andy Hughes in place of Cousins and Ajdarevic just before the hour mark as the Londoners changed to a 4-4-2 formation in search of a route back into the match.
But any hopes of such a comeback soon vanished five minutes later as Nugent was allowed too much time and space on the edge of the area, making no mistake with the finish by firing a low drive out of Hamer’s reach for 3-0.
The Foxes striker almost added his second, and Leicester’s fourth, when he met De Laet’s cross on the run but Hamer did excellently well to palm the effort away.
Nugent then almost turned provider when he crossed for Knockhaert in the centre, although the tricky winger couldn’t direct the ball goal wards and Hamer watched it fly over.
There was still time for Mahrez to fire a free-kick harmlessly over as the game entered injury time.
An away fixture against the runaway league leaders was never going to be an easy assignment, but Charlton must now focus on their FA Cup quarter-final next weekend against Sheffield United.
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Charlton: Hamer, Wilson, Wiggins, Wood, Morrison (Dervite 20), Poyet, Cousins (Hughes 60), Harriott, Jackson, Ajdarevic (Tudgay 60), Church. Subs not used: Green, Ghoochannejhad, Thurham-Ulien, Fox. Att: 24,742 (867 from Charlton).
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