Late Iheanacho’s effort hands Leicester City Community Shield title
At Wembley Stadium on Saturday, Leicester City defeated Premier League winners Manchester City to win the 2021 Community Shield, the club’s second in its existence.
Seniorman Kelechi Iheanacho scored from the penalty spot just before full time to give Brendan Rodgers’ team the victory.
The win was the Foxes’ second in a row at Wembley Stadium, as they beat Chelsea by the same scoreline in the FA Cup final in May but ended fifth in the Premier League.
“I’ve been practising penalties. I missed one last season so I’ve been practising in pre-season. I had just one thing in my mind: just shoot at an angle and hit it hard, and that’s what I did,” Iheanacho said.
The annual English football curtain raiser, which pits the previous year’s FA Cup and Premier League winners against each other, was tense in the first half but scoreless after 45 minutes.
Pep Guardiola sent in Man City’s British record signing Jack Grealish shortly after the hour mark for his first runout at his new club following his arrival from Aston Villa, with the game still poised 0-0 in the second half.
Senior players for Man City were rested or recovering from injuries, and Guardiola fielded an unfamiliar lineup with five academy starlets in his squad and Sam Edozie and Cole Palmer starting.
With evergreen striker Jamie Vardy up front, Leicester were near to full strength after French defender Wesley Fofana injured his leg in a friendly earlier in the week.
Vardy, 34, came closest to scoring in the first half when goalkeeper Zack Steffen pushed a hooked shot against the post just before halftime.
In the seventh minute, Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel pushed a dangerously dipping Ilkay Gundogan free kick over the bar.
When it appeared that the game might go to a penalty shootout, Iheanacho pulled a foul on Man City defender Nathan Ake and the referee pointed to the spot, which the Nigerian international converted.
Manchester City kicks off their Premier League season against Tottenham Hotspur on August 15, while Leicester City hosts Wolves the day before.