Leicester City 2-4 Burton Albion: Nigel Pearson’s future hangs in the balance

A humiliation. This was Leicester’s worst League Cup result in nearly 20 years and their first League Cup defeat to a fourth tier side in 30.

What was supposed to be a morale boosting cruise to the Third Round turned into a disastrous exit and the Foxes can blame no-one but themselves. On a night when those on the pitch were supposed to be staking a claim for a regular place in the starting eleven, only those who didn’t cross the white line saw their stock improve.

Leicester were awful.

They were awful for so many reasons. There were individual errors, misplaced passes, poor to non-existent movement off the ball, football Nigel Pearson called self-indulgent and decisions that tried the patience of even the most saintly Foxes fans.

Let’s start with the individual errors. Zac Whitbread’s decision to let the ball bounce before Burton’s second will be the one replayed most often, but he was by no means alone. Paul Gallagher sent a backpass to Schmeichel without looking and almost played in Calvin Zola. Sean St. Ledger’s sent long balls forward to where his teammates where and not where they were going to be. And as has become a worrying habit, several decent chances to score were missed.

Up front Waghorn and Schlupp rarely stretched a Burton Albion backline which could barely believe its luck. Leicester’s build up play was too slow too often, allowing the back four to remain neatly organised and play with their backs to goal.

In midfield Matty James lacked bite and so did Neil Danns. When times were tough there was no tough tackling. When the team and the fans needed lifting, neither offered a rousing piece of play.

In fairness to both men, neither did anyone else.

Perhaps that was what proved most disappointing – the lack of fight from a group of players who ought to have made the most of a rare start. With no more League Cup matches for another season, it’s worth pondering if some of those on display this evening will be afforded another chance to impress.

And of course now attention turns to the manager. Was eight changes too many? Did his tactics make sense? Does he have long to turn it around?

For what it’s worth your correspondent would argue the answers are no, no and probably not. That side should have proved too much for Burton, even if it was hampered by baffling decisions to experiment with inside-out wingers and later to continue with short passing long after Marco Futacs (a more than useful target man) had entered the fray.

The Raksriaksorn’s might have learned from the last two attempts to find a short-cut to the Premier League by sacking the manager early in the season, but you wouldn’t bet on it. Right now a poor result on Saturday really could spell the end for Nigel Pearson.

This blog has always argued sacking managers so early in the season makes no sense, but since Foxblogger doesn’t get to make the calls at the King Power Stadium it can’t argue Nigel Pearson is safe in his job.

It could be another busy week.

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5 Responses to Leicester City 2-4 Burton Albion: Nigel Pearson’s future hangs in the balance

  1. steve rigley says:

    mr pearson you had a chance to prove the last too results were not down too bad luck. but you have again lost the plot regarding team selection you should consider leaving before you are sacked like your predessor mr ericksom

    • Trevor Bailey says:

      The premiership is now an international super league and the champiuonship can now be considered akin to the the old top tier first division. More and more we see real quality in the championship – something that Leicester so obviously lack. I probably go to around a dozen home games throughout the season but from those games it ‘s easy to see that Leicester are going nowhere. At the end of last season my thoughts were that they needed 2 new full backs who could actually cross a decent ball (where’s Steve Guppy when you need him?), delivery from corners were abysmal !! I’ve high hopes of Marshall and Knockeart, Marshall for his ability to kick a ball where he wants it to go and Knockeart because he seems able to do something a little differently and play a ‘killer’ ball. Leicester have a host of indifferent players (quite a few that were on show last night) and it was an indifferent performance resulting in a deserved Burton victory. I’m afraid Waghorn, James and Schlupp are at best average , current first teamers De Laet and Konchesky are no better. Of those who didn’t play last night then LLoyd Dyer for me is the most disappointing, give him a left foot to match his pace and dribbling abilityand he would be a £20 million player, as it is my left foot is better than his left foot and I’m 61 and right footed. Vardy seems a decent prospect and if Beckford could show a little more then we might have a decent strike force. The last thing I would suggest is we need areal ball winner in midfield and someone who can stand on the ball and dictate the game a little (Charlie Adams?) Overall though Leicester are no better than a mid table side!!

  2. Craig Bird says:

    Pearson now has his own team and it’s no different from the average side we last year. I do not understand how a man who is supposedly a bright intelligent manager cannot see that to be successful these days a team needs pace through its midfield, not just out wide. We have not had a midfielder who was prepared to run past the strikers since Muzzy Izzet. We are a lazy team who are not prepared to work hard for each other off the ball to create space and offer options. This is basic stuff and Pearson seems stuck in his stubborn ways, he will not take this club forward.

    Look at the bright managers such as Di Canio. He gets his team playing in how own image, skillful, hard working and passionate. We have an old fashioned centre half in charge, how many of those have gone on to be top class managers? not many, because their ethos is to try and stop other teams playing rather than imposing themselves on the opposition. Right now we can’t even keep a clean sheet to save our life.

    It’s early days in the season but unless there is clear signs of improvement on Saturday then I’m afraid it’s time for change.

  3. Peter Eldredge says:

    It.s easy for us to say should happen on the pitch but I have played in second div in Belgium and am now 73 and you need a special skill to make things happen in midfield. Weelens fills that role and when he is fit he will make a huge difference.I think team selection last night was the problem.
    If you play your tried and tested team from start,Get well ahead and then introduce your signings.

    Pete Eldredge

  4. rengetta khan says:


    Please go NOW before someone makes you go.

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