Leicester vs Wolves: Predictions, Preview, Team News, Betting Tips and Odds
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With a piece of silverware already under their belts, Leicester City kick off their 2021-22 Premier League season on Saturday against Wolverhampton Wanderers at the King Power Stadium.
While Brendan Rodgers is gearing up for his third full season in charge of the Foxes, a new name will aim to restore Wolves back to their short-lived European days.
Date, Time and Venue
|Leicester are 6/10 to win on Saturday CREDIT: GETTY|
Date: Saturday, 14 August 2021
Kick-off: 15:00 UK/ 16:00 CET
Venue: King Power Stadium.
|Leicester City play Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday|
The famed Leicester City end-of-season collapse ended up proving fatal in their bid to return to the Champions League, as three defeats from their final four Premier League games in the 2020-21 season condemned them to another fifth-placed finish and another stint in the Europa League.
Unable to take advantage of Chelsea's defeat to Aston Villa as they were sunk by a Gareth Bale-inspired Tottenham Hotspur on the final day, Leicester did manage to march to their first-ever FA Cup triumph over the Blues, which booked their appearance in the season's annual curtain raiser - the Community Shield.
Facing a Manchester City side far from full strength, the Foxes kept Pep Guardiola's men at bay for 89 minutes before former City striker Kelechi Iheanacho coolly converted from the penalty spot to propel Leicester to their first Community Shield triumph in 50 years.
Winning the curtain-raiser is one thing, but Leicester supporters are clearly pining for a return to the Champions League, and as ever, an astute array of acquisitions in Patson Daka, Boubakary Soumare and Ryan Bertrand could prove priceless in their bid for a top-four finish.
Leicester's home form in 2021 so far has certainly been a mixed bag - winning six and losing five of their 11 Premier League games since the turn of the year - while a record of one win from their last five opening-day matches is not exactly cause for optimism, either.
London came calling for Nuno Espirito Santo after he failed to replicate the type of form which propelled Wolverhampton Wanderers into Europe, with yet another Portuguese in former Benfica coach Bruno Lage arriving at Molineux during a significant summer of change.
Of course, Wolves' cause in the 2020-21 campaign was not helped by the sickening head injury suffered by Raul Jimenez, with Nuno's side winning just three of their final 13 games in the top flight to claim 13th spot in the table - 17 points adrift of Europe and 17 clear of relegation.
imenez's return to fitness has been a truly welcome sight, while the acquisitions of Francisco Trincao, Yerson Mosquera, Rayan Ait-Nouri and Jose Sa represent a statement of intent from Lage, who oversaw a mixed bag of pre-season results with the West Midlands side.
Successes over Coventry City, Al Shabab, Real Betis and Forest Green Rovers were dampened by defeats to Crewe Alexandra, Las Palmas and Celta Vigo, although Wolves travel to Leicester with the knowledge that they have not suffered defeat on the opening day since the 2012-13 Championship season.
A Jamie Vardy penalty was all that separated the two sides during Wolves' most recent trip to the King Power, and worryingly for the visitors, they have failed to find the back of the net in five of their six Premier League battles with Leicester since 2018.
Leicester vs Wolves Head-to-head
We have seen only one goal in the last four head to head games between these two sides.
Leicester were the team to score it in a 1-0 victory in the teams’ previous meeting at King Power Stadium (in November last year).
Leicester have a much better record at home where they won 18, drew 12, and lost only 6 of 36 encounters with Wolves.
Leicester have already been dealt a major blow with the news that Wesley Fofana has suffered a fractured fibula after a challenge from Villarreal's Fer Nino, and the Foxes are said to be closing in on a deal for Jannik Vestergaard to fill the void.
Daniel Amartey should continue to deputise in defence for the time being, though, while Jonny Evans and James Justin are not expected to be back until after the international break.
Timothy Castagne has been donning a mask in training after suffering facial fractures during Euro 2020 with Belgium, but the right-back is unlikely to be passed fit just yet.
Wolves' medical staff also have their work cut out for them at present, with attacking duo Pedro Neto and Daniel Podence still recovering from surgery alongside another long-term victim in Jonny.
Further defensive concerns have arisen with Willy Boly and new arrival Mosquera, who are nursing thigh injuries sustained in pre-season, so Max Kilman should earn a start alongside Romain Saiss and Conor Coady in the back three.
Jimenez rediscovered his goalscoring touch in pre-season and looks set to be flanked by Trincao and Adama Traore, whose future remains up in the air.
Leicester City possible starting lineup:
Schmeichel; Pereira, Amartey, Soyuncu, Bertrand; Ndidi, Tielemans; Perez, Maddison, Barnes; Vardy
Wolverhampton Wanderers possible starting lineup:
Sa; Coady, Kilman, Saiss; Semedo, Neves, Moutinho, Ait-Nouri; Traore, Jimenez, Trincao
Leicester vs Wolves: Top Three Predictions
Leicester to Win
The Foxes haven't lost any of their last four league meetings with Wolves and secured a 1-0 win against them when the duo last clashed at the King Power Stadium. Leicester have won their last two matches and finished well above Wolves last season, so you can see why we're backing a home win on Saturday.
BTTS – No
This is a fixture that doesn't always produce a lot of goals and we're only expecting one side to find the back of the net on Saturday. Just one of the last six encounters between Leicester and Wolves have ended with both teams scoring and only three of each club's last six outings in all competitions have also failed to produce goals for both sides.
Kelechi Iheanacho to Score
Kelechi Iheanacho's in the Premier League finally took off last season when he scored 12 times in 25 appearances for the Foxes and after scoring the winner in the Community Shield against Man City last week, the Nigerian has established himself as one of Leicester's key players. We're backing Iheanacho to get off the mark for the season at home to Wolves on Saturday.
Prediction: Leicester City 3-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers
Betting tips and odds
Foxes quick out of the traps
Saturday’s run-out against Manchester City will certainly help Leicester from a fitness point of view.
Even though the Community Shield is not classed as a major trophy, silverware was still available so it was certainly worth more than a pre-season friendly.
The match also gave Rodgers the chance to thrust James Maddison and Harvey Barnes back into action after the two creators missed large chunks of 2021.
Leicester always play attacking, front-foot football under Rodgers and he has a plethora of options to choose from going forward.
However, the loss of Wesley Fofana to a broken leg will significantly weaken their defence, as the main source of pace has been taken out.
Wolves didn’t score enough goals last season and were at times accused of being too boring and passive. However, pre-season suggests they may be more open this season as they have scored 11 and conceded eight in eight pre-season games.
Tip: Leicester to win and both teams to score @ 11/4 with Paddy Power
High-scoring clash on the cards
Leicester netted 68 goals in the Premier League last season, with only champions Manchester City and runners up Manchester United hitting the net more.
However, only Leeds United conceded more goals of all the sides finishing in the top half.
Maddison and Barnes will add more to their build-up play while Iheanacho proved last season he can lessen the burden on the evergreen Jamie Vardy.
The Nigerian enjoyed a phenomenal 2021, scoring 16 goals in all competitions, and the arrival of Patson Daka will surely encourage him to continue impressing.
For Wolves, it is hard to underestimate how important Raul Jimenez is to them and how sorely he was missed after fracturing his skull against Arsenal.
The Mexican provides both a goal threat and a focal point, both of which were missing from the side during his absence.
All these factors add up to what should be an entertaining game.
Tip: Over 2.5 goals @ 19/20 with Paddy Power
Leicester capable of late show
Some opening-day games can be slow burners, with players getting back up to speed following a summer off.
Both Leicester and Wolves have players in their squad coming back to fitness, while others took part in Euro 2020 so will have stars who may be feeling a little fatigued.
Both sides also have players who can make an impact off the bench and stretch the opposition in the second half.
Daka and fellow new arrival Boubakary Soumare can provide that, with the latter very good at moving the ball forward from deep midfield.
For Wolves, the enigmatic Adama Traore is likely to be called upon, and even though there are still questions over his end product, he is a nightmare for any full-back to deal with.
It is in Leicester’s DNA to attack to the very end if there is an opportunity to win so late goals may be expected.
Tip: Second half to have most goals @ 11/10 with Paddy Power
Leicester vs Wolves odds
Leicester are 6/10 to win, with Wolves 9/2 and the draw priced at 14/5.
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