Leicester ground out a valuable win to cap off their festive period against Everton on New Year’s Day.
The lunchtime kickoff was always going to be a slow-burner, and an incredibly dull first 45 minutes suggested no one would be able to breach a defence in the first game of 2019.
Michael Keane, however, had other ideas. Failing to control a high ball, Ricardo Pereira collected and slotted through to Jamie Vardy, who predictably did the rest.
Here’s how we rated Leicester’s players against Everton:
Kasper Schmeichel: 8
A big save at the end of the game secured all three points. That’s what keepers of his calibre do for you.
Danny Simpson: 6
Simpson stepped in and delivered an adequate performance, never looking particularly hassled by the Everton attackers.
Harry Maguire: 8
Superb showing from the centre-half, once again showing himself to be a top class defender. Everton looked clueless against the back four, expertly marshalled by Maguire.
Jonny Evans: 8
His partner in crime was Evans, who has looked more assured than Wes Morgan when called upon this year.
Ben Chilwell: 7
The left-back continues to impress, his most memorable moment being a long run deep into the Everton half, ending with a shot saved by Jordan Pickford. Bernard did enjoy some success down his wing however when he joined the action.
Wilfred Ndidi: 7
Ndidi may establish himself this season as one of the premier defensive midfielders in the division.
Nampalys Mendy: 6
Mendy will have better games than the one he had today, but by no means damaged his claim for a place in the side.
Hamza Choudhury: 7
The 21-year-old doubles up with Ndidi as one of Leicester’s highly capable defensive midfield prospects.
Rachid Ghezzal: 5
Ghezzal massively underwhelmed in the first half, and was hooked at the break for Marc Albrighton.
Jamie Vardy: 8
Took the chance when it came to him, like a striker of his quality would do.
Ricardo Pereira: 9
The right-back turned out on the wing for this match, and looked completely brilliant. Laying on the assist for the goal, the Portuguese star was my man of the match today.
Marc Albrighton: 7
Coming on for Ghezzal, it was noticeable how much more dangerous Leicester looked down the left flank.