December 22, 2018 / 4:59 PM / 6 months ago

Soccer-Vardy earns Leicester narrow win at Chelsea

* Leicester beat Chelsea 1-0 to inflict first home league defeat

* Eden Hazard hit the crossbar as Chelsea dominated possession

* Jamie Vardy sent Leicester ahead early in the second half

* Chelsea’s Marcos Alonso struck the post in the 90th minute

* Chelsea at Watford next, Leicester host Manchester City


Dec 22 (Reuters) - Jamie Vardy’s well-taken breakaway goal helped Leicester to earn a 1-0 win at Chelsea on Saturday to ease the pressure on coach Claude Puel and inflict the hosts’ first home Premier League defeat of the season.

The English striker’s goal in the 51st minute earned the visitors only their second win in six league matches, while a determined defensive display kept Chelsea forward Eden Hazard at bay.

The Belgian winger, deployed in a false nine role by Chelsea coach Maurizio Sarri, came closest in the first half as he struck the crossbar with a fierce drive, with the hosts dominating possession but failing to create many clear chances.

Vardy made Chelsea pay shortly after the break, finishing lethally after James Maddison slipped him through at the end of a quick counter-attack.

Hazard came close again but was denied by a brilliant Kasper Schmeichel save, while Cesar Azpilicueta’s last-ditch block stopped Vardy adding another with a clever backheel.

Chelsea almost found an equaliser in the 90th minute but Marcos Alonso hit the inside of the post and the ball rolled agonisingly across the face of goal and out. (Reporting by Rik Sharma; editing by Clare Fallon)

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