Leicester City 1-2 Udinese: Foxes underwhelming in tough pre-season affair

Leicester City 1-2 Udinese: Foxes underwhelming in tough pre-season affair

Claude Puel's men struggled against their Serie A opponents as their preparations for the new season continued.

Daniel Orme
Leicester CityWard; Fuchs (Pereira, min 60), Morgan (Evans, min 46 (Benalouane, min. 60)), Johnson (Elder, min. 84), Amartey (Simpson, min 60); Choudhury (N'didi, min 60), Iborra (Mendy, min. 60), Silva (King, min. 33); Albrighton (Chilwell, min. 33), Diabate (Musa, min. 60), Ulloa (Slimani, min. 33 (Iheanacho, min 60)).
UdineseScuffet; Wague (Danilo, min 46), Samir (Vizeu, min 46), Nuytinck (Pezzella, min 46), Stryger (Opoku, min 46); Fofana (Heurtaux, min. 71), Mandragora (Pontisso, min. 82), Barak (Machis, min. 79); De Paul (Balic, min 70), Machis (Pussetto, min 46), Lasagna (Al-Tameemi, min 46).
SCORE0-1, min. 4, Lasagna. 0-2, min. 23, Machís. 1-2, min. 89, Iheanacho.
REFEREEBooked: Vizeu (min. 65), Chilwell (min. 81)
INCIDENTSPre-season friendly between Leicester City of the Premier League and Serie A outfit Udinese. The match was played at the Wörthersee Stadion.

Leicester City continued their preparations for the new season with a 2-1 defeat to Udinese in a pre-season friendly at the Wörthersee Stadion on Saturday afternoon.

The Foxes were uninspiring throughout the match and really struggled to create chances as first-half strikes from Kevin Lasagna and Darwin Machís condemned the East-Midlanders to defeat despite a late strike from Kelechi Iheanacho.

Udinese cut through Leicester's layers

It only took four minutes for the Italian outfit to seize the lead through their captain, Lasagna. Following an excellent through-ball from Rodrigo de Paul, that split the Leicester defence, the forward ran free into the box and finished coolly past Danny Ward.

Udinese's excellent start continued as Machís almost notched a second. The Venezuelan out-muscled Christian Fuchs and looked to curl into the far corner from the edge of the box but the ball dipped just wide of goal.

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Machís doubles the Italians' lead

Despite going behind, the reaction of Claude Puel's troops was encouraging. Marc Albrighton and Vicente Iborra both sent headers wide before the former had an effort from range collected by Simone Scuffet in the Udinese goal.

However, Leicester were soon ripped apart again. Another excellent pass from de Paul allowed Machís to find space beyond the Foxes' backline. With time aplenty, he slid the ball underneath the advancing Ward to claim a comfortable lead for Julio Velázquez's men heading into half-time.

Low-key second period

Due to an expected glut of substitutions from both sides, the second-half really failed to get going initially. The one chance that Leicester did create though, they almost found a route back into the game. Iheanacho did excellently to wriggle free from his defender and cut back to Ricardo Pereira. The defender, who was making his first appearance for the club, turned brilliantly and sent a low effort towards goal but Scuffet saved well.

Ahmed Musa also gave supporters a glance of his wicked pace as he tore down the right-wing but his poked effort was deflected behind.

Ward had to be at his best in the Foxes' goal as the game came to a close. From a corner, Nicholas Opoku produced an acrobatic effort that looked to be arrowing into the net only for the ex-Liverpool man to react brilliantly and paw the ball away.

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Iheanacho notches late on

One positive in the closing stages was the performance of Iheanacho. He was thwarted at first by Scuffet as he poked Musa's cross towards goal but was not to be silenced. Controlling a long pass, the Nigerian raced towards goal and finished excellently with a low shot into the far corner to earn a consolation for the Premier League outfit.

Puel will now turn his attentions to the Foxes' pre-season clash with Spanish giants Valencia at the King Power Stadium on Wednesday evening.