Leicester v Manchester City: Back Vardy to hit the target

Paul Higham thinks a fresh Jamie Vardy can cause Man City problems in their trip to Leicester with good value in his shots on target odds.

Stuttering start for Foxes

Leicester will start this game level on points with Man City but they've garnered those six points in completely contrasting fashion - with the Foxes having to battling to one-goal wins over Wolves and Norwich while the champions battered the Canaries and Arsenal 5-0.

Leicester's 4-1 defeat at West Ham was a tough scoreline since they played very well considering they had 10 men for 50 minutes and even had chances to level before the game got away from them late on.

It's that kind of display at the London Stadium though that will be called upon here as there seems little prospect of the 5-2 victory at the Etihad being repeated and more chance of them sneaking a 1-0 win as they did in the Community Shield.

Brendan Rodgers' side do have those two wins in the last three meetings to give them confidence, and a nice record against current Premier League champions with Leicester winning three of their last five.

City hoping for away day boost

Including the Community Shield, Pep Guardiola's side have lost their last three games away from the Etihad and not scored in the last two - in direct opposition to the goal-scoring exploits at home.

They have won the last two games at Leicester though and with 11 wins out of 20, this fixture has most away wins out of any Premier League games to be played that many times.

Guardiola will be hoping to have goalkeeper Ederson and forward Gabriel Jesus available with the Brazilian FA looking to ban them following the Premier League not allowing them to travel for the World Cup qualifiers.

Jesus especially would be a big miss as he's been involved in 13 goals in his last 16 league starts and he's scored five goals against Leicester - who are his second favourite opposition behind Everton (8).

City favourites in fixture with few draws

There's no real surprise to see Man City as 1.62 favourites but Leicester look a big price at 6.2 given they've found a winning formula in recent times - and games after such a busy international break can often throw up these kind of surprise results.

What would be a surprise though is if this game ended all square, as there's been no draw between these two in the last 11 league games, while just one of Leciester's last 23 league home games has finished level.

If you're a believer in all good runs must come to an end, then the draw can be backed at 4.5.

Your first instinct here is goals - and the bookies largely agree with 1.82 on both teams to score being the favourite of two, while over 2.5 goals is also fancied at 1.78.

You just wonder though if this will be another Community Shield type peformance with Leicester going for the smash-and-grab, and City's defensive stats since defeat at Spurs read one shot each for Norwich and Arsenal with none on target.

They also have the lowest xG against in the league.

Fresh Vardy always a danger

City faced 13 shots and three on target at Tottenham, and the big question is if they've tightened up since then or if Leicester will get similar joy, as they certainly have the players to take advantage.

None more so than Jamie Vardy, who has been a real thorn in the side of City with eight goals in 10 league games against Guardiola's side - that's more top flight goals than any other player has managed against a side coached by Pep.

His odds of 2.88 to score anytime will certain have plenty of interest given his love of a goal against City.

I'd be more interested in taking him to have 2+ shots on target though at a more healthy 3.75 when you consider that bet's landed in three out of his four games this season. You can also get him at 2.25 just to have three shots - he had four in the Community Shield with three on target.


John Stones had a bruising encounter in Poland and Ruben Dias played out in Azerbaijan as both City centre backs played two full games in the international break - and Vardy is so quick he can take advantage of any kind of fatigue in the legs.

The problem you always find with backing City's players is just who will play, and even more so after internationals, but one man who has started all three games so far is Ferran Torres.

Who needs Harry Kane when Torres has scored five in his last six league games, and has also had a goal disallowed, as he really starts to settle in that position as their central forward.

The worry is Torres has played a lot this last two weeks, but so has most of City's squad, and if Jesus can't play Guardiola will have no real viable alternatives for this big game.

He's also scored in his last two games and goals give strikers energy - he's 2.5 to continue his scoring run but if goals are in short supply he's a firm favourite to go into your Bet Builder.

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