Leicester City became unlikely rivals with Premier League giants Manchester City and Arsenal at the top of the table on Saturday as striker Jamie Vardy maintained his extraordinary scoring sequence and to ensure his team stayed in the mix with the big boys.
The England forward hammered home a 65th-minute penalty to score for the ninth consecutive league match and seal Leicester’s 2-1 win over Watford. At the time of victory, the three points put the Midlands side joint top with City and Arsenal although both have since gone a point ahead of the Foxes after draws against Aston Villa and Tottenham respectively.
Manchester United kept up the pressure on the pacesetters when a terrific goal from impressive youngster Jesse Lingard helped them to a 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion at Old Trafford and put them within a point of the Leicester.
It was Vardy, though, who was again the talk of the town as he became only the second player to score in nine straight Premier League appearances. He just needs to find the target in his next games at Newcastle United to equal the record of Manchester United’s Ruud van Nistelrooy who netted in 10 successive matches in 2003.
Riyad Mahrez, the usual Leicester penalty taker, handed the ball over after Vardy had been brought down by keeper Heurelho Gomes and the home crowd bayed for the striker to be given the chance to keep his run going.
Leicester manager didn’t mind of the switch in penalty takers and said after the game: “Of course Jamie wanted to score, that’s normal. Van Nistelrooy was a fantastic striker and, like him, Jamie has everything to achieve at the highest level.”
Before Vardy scored his ninth successive goal, Ranieri’s surprise packages, who spent last season struggling for survival, had gone ahead when midfielder N’Golo Kante was amazed to see his weak 52nd-minute effort roll under accident-prone Gomes’ hands. at 2-0 down, Watford then hit back through a Troy Deeney penalty but it wasn’t to be enough as Leicester held on.
At the start of the season, the chances of anyone backing relatively unknown prospect Jamie Vardy to be the top scorer in the Premier League and on a hot run of nine consecutive strikes are next to none. Such has been his rise to prominence, traders on the Football INDEX haven’t been holding back in getting involved and purchasing shares in the England striker. At the start of trading, he was valued at an incredibly low £1.00 and in the space of a few weeks now stands at a value of £1.67.