Sports Desk, Jan 19 (efe-epa).- Leicester City defeated Chelsea 2-0 on Tuesday to displace Manchester United atop the Premier League at the mid-point of the season.
The Foxes improved to 38 points, one more than United, who have two games in hand. Manchester City are third, two points behind their cross-town rivals and one better than defending champions Liverpool.
The last occasion Leicester led the league this late in the campaign was in 2015-2016, when they stunned the world of sport by winning the title.
Brendan Rodgers’ men are undefeated in seven matches in all competitions, while the Blues have triumphed just twice in their last eight Premier League contests.
Chelsea have slipped to eighth on 29 points, the same as Southampton but above them in table based on goal difference.
The hosts grabbed the lead in the 6th minute with a goal by Wilfried Ndidi, who pounced on a loose ball and sent it off the post and into the net, leaving Blues goalkeeper Edouard Mendy with no chance.
Only the cross-bar stopped James Maddison from doubling the advantage in the 16th minute.
Chelsea were awarded a penalty in the 38th minute for a foul against Christian Pulisic, but a VAR review determined that the contact took place outside the box and the Blues had to settle for a free kick that came to nothing.
Seconds later, Maddison completing his brace to make it 2-0, culminating an attack that began with a pass from Foxes keeper Kasper Schmeichel.
Late sub Timo Werner looked to have cut the deficit in half for Chelsea in the 85th minute, only for the goal to be disallowed for offside, confirmed by VAR.
Earlier Tuesday in London, West Ham United bested West Bromwich Albion 2-1, marking their best start to a calendar year since 1958.
The Hammers have won all four of their matches in 2021, including an FA Cup third-round tie. And this latest result at London Stadium lifts them to seventh place on 32 points from 19 matches, the club’s best-ever record half-way through the Premier League season.
West Brom, meanwhile, remain second-from-bottom in the league with 11 points and just one victory in six Premier League games under new coach Sam Allardyce, brought in last month to save the Baggies from relegation.
West Ham led 1-0 at the break on Jarrod Bowen’s goal in first-half stoppage time.
Matheus Pereira, who scored twice in last weekend’s 3-2 win over Wolverhampton, equalized for the visitors early in the second half, but Michail Antonio put the Hammers ahead to stay in the 66th minute.
It was Antonio’s second goal in two matches after returning from injury. EFE