Enzo Maresca refusing to panic after stuttering Leicester lose to Bristol City

Posted Saturday, March 30, 2024 by PA

Enzo Maresca refusing to panic after stuttering Leicester lose to Bristol City

Boss Enzo Maresca was in bullish mood after Anis Mehmeti’s superb strike earned Bristol City a 1-0 win to put another dent in Leicester’s bid for automatic promotion from the Championship.

The winger found the roof of the net with a stunning left-footed strike from the edge of the box in the 73rd minute to inflict a fourth defeat in six league games on the stuttering Foxes.

Leicester paid for missed chances, with Jamie Vardy the leading culprit as he was twice denied by fine Max O’Leary saves when one-on-one with the Robins goalkeeper.

Vardy was substituted after Mehmeti’s goal and along with his team-mates had to endure boos at the final whistle from the massed ranks of travelling fans.

But Maresca declined to join in any sense of panic and said: “There would be cause for concern if the performances weren’t there.

“But we are creating so much and our recent defeats have all been down to not finishing our chances.

“The reaction of our fans at the end was understandable. All I can say to them is if they get nervous now it can transmit to the players over our remaining games. They have been brilliant up to now.

“Jamie Vardy doesn’t need to apologise to anyone after all he has contributed over the years.

“Even the best strikers miss chances. That’s football. He will continue to be a very important player to us over the remaining games.

“We have another game in 72 hours so there is no time to dwell on this defeat. We have to recover quickly and be ready to face Norwich.”

Bristol City head coach Liam Manning paid glowing tribute to his players after their best win since he took charge.

He said: “I have to admit I expected our net to bulge with the Vardy chances but Max O’Leary did an outstanding job.

“He has international ambitions with Ireland and they are looking increasingly realistic.

“We might have had a couple of penalties and the lads were terrific in carrying out our game plan. In the end, we deserved the result.

“Results have not always gone our way recently but the dividing line between success and failure in the Championship is so slim.

“I see the lads in training every day and I know how keen they are to learn and improve.

“Players like Anis Mehmeti are still at the beginnings of their careers. He can frustrate at times but his goal showed what he is capable of producing.

“You always need to ride your luck at times against quality opposition but I couldn’t be happier with the overall team performance.”


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