Patrick Bamford played a starring role for Leeds United as Leicester City missed the chance to move second in the Premier League table following a 3-1 defeat at the King Power Stadium.
The Foxes snatched the lead on 13 minutes when the in-form Harvey Barnes finished off a dashing run and one-two with James Maddison to grab his 11th goal of the season.
However, Marcelo Bielsa’s men were level just 127 seconds later as Stuart Dallas rifled home Bamford’s pass to cap a flowing move down the right.
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Both sides had goals chalked off for offside prior to the break with Kasper Schmeichel forced to make a number of fine saves in the home goal.
Brendan Rodgers responded by switching to a back three from the restart and it saw the game transform into a tight, cagey affair.
Leeds struggled to carve out as many opportunities but did eventually lay the foundations for the end of the Foxes’ seven-match unbeaten run in the league when Bamford brilliantly fired home his 11th top-flight goal of the campaign 20 minutes from time.
The Whites striker then raced clear before unselfishly laying the ball across for Jack Harrison to put the icing on the cake with a tap-in on 84 minutes.
The result means Leicester miss the opportunity to edge above Manchester United and are now five points off leaders, Manchester City having played a game more.
Leeds, who host Everton on Wednesday, stay 12th while Leicester will aim to bounce back when they visit Fulham.

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TALKING POINT

No Vardy, no party as Bamford and Leeds shine. There was plenty of talk ahead of kick off about how Leicester could cope without injured talisman, Jamie Vardy. They have shared the goals since the forward’s last strike on December 20, but that doesn’t account for the direct threat his style and pace bring to the side.
Early on, it looked like Maddison and Barnes were ready to show they can really step up in his absence, but the reality is that they are attacking midfielders rather than out-and-out goal getters. The Vardy-shaped hole in the Foxes frontline became more and more conspicuous as the game wore on against a Leeds defence that is not exactly water-tight. Leicester will be disappointed not to have moved up to second, but the bigger picture is that they need to find a solution quick if Vardy is out for a significant run of games, as they do not want a repeat of last season’s drop-off in the run-in.
As for Leeds, the rollercoaster surges on with this performance providing one of their more brilliant days. Bamford got back on track with his first strike of 2021 and was involved in all of the goals. Bielsa’s team will now aim to look up the table rather than over their shoulder in the second part of the campaign, but they will need more consistency if they are to truly make a realistic push for a higher finish.

MAN OF THE MATCH

Patrick Bamford (Leeds United). A goal and two assists ensured the forward made a match-winning contribution. He emphatically ended his four-match run in the Premier League without a goal to take his tally for the season to 11, with eight of those coming on the road.

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PLAYER RATINGS

LEICESTER CITY: Schmeichel 8, Castagne 6, Fofana 7, Evans 6, Justin 7, Mendy 7, Tielemans 7, Barnes 7, Maddison 7, Albrighton 6, Perez 6. Subs: Ricardo 6, Soyuncu 6, Under n/a.

LEEDS UNITED: Meslier 7, Ayling 8, Cooper 7, Struijk 7, Alioski 7, Phillips 8, Raphinha 8, Dallas 7, Rodrigo 5, Harrison 7, Bamford 9. Subs: Klich 7, Costa n/a.
Matchcast: Full match stats and commentary

KEY MOMENTS

13’ - GOAL! – Leicester 1-0 Leeds. Barnes hurtles through the midfield, exchanges a one-two with Maddison and angles a low strike beyond Meslier to give the Foxes the advantage.
15’ - GOAL! – Leicester 1-1 Leeds. The visitors hit right back as Dallas races on to Bamford's pass and lashes a first-time shot into the far corner from the right side of the area.
33’ - LEEDS CHANCE! Slick build up from Leeds releases Raphinha on the right side of the area, but Schmeichel gets down well to push away his thumping strike.
60’ - GOAL! – Leicester 1-2 Leeds. Bamford turns on to Raphinha's superb pass and slams a stunning left-foot effort into the top corner.
76’ – LEICESTER CHANCES! Fofana sees a volley deflect over the top after Leeds had gone to sleep defending a deep free kick. The resulting corner is flicked on, but Perez and Evans somehow fail to convert as they queue up at the back post.
84’ - GOAL! – Leicester 1-3 Leeds. It's three! Bamford surges free of the Foxes defence on the break. He races towards Schmeichel before laying it across for Harrison to tap home.

KEY STAT

Bamford has been directly involved in 15 goals in his 20 Premier League games for Leeds United (11 goals, 4 assists) – only Tony Yeboah (17) has had a hand in more goals in their first 20 PL appearances for the club.
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