Leicester 3-0 Rotherham: Patson Daka’s double widens gulf as Enzo Maresca’s men are on course to smash the Championship points record

23 December 2023 0 By Total Football News
  • Patson Daka’s brace – and one from Cesare Casadei – helped the Foxes to win
  • Enzo Maresca’s side are on course to smash the record for Championship points
  • IAN LADYMAN: Mikel Arteta gets criticised for his touchline behaviour, but Arsenal are a team that reek of excellent coaching – It’s All Kicking Off 

Quite where Leicester rank among the greatest Championship teams is a debate that will rage on for the rest of the season and beyond, but there is no doubt Enzo Maresca’s men are likely to be in the upper echelons of that list.

Six sides have surpassed the 100-point mark — including the Foxes in 2013-14 — and with 58 points from 23 games, they are on course to smash that and beat Reading’s division-record 106 points in 2005-06.

Maresca highlighted the need to keep improving pre-game, but with their fifth win in a row and 19 from 23, there is not much more his side can do after a victory thanks to a brace from Patson Daka and one from Cesare Casadei.

‘I’m very happy,’ the Italian said post-match. ‘I didn’t expect to be with this amount of points after the first half of the season, but I don’t think anyone expected that.’

The Championship is known for the differences between the top and the bottom and that was clearly on display at the King Power.

Patson Daka's brace helped Leicester City to a comfortable win at home to Rotherham

Patson Daka’s brace helped Leicester City to a comfortable win at home to Rotherham

Cesare Casadei also headed home two minutes after the Chelsea loanee came on the pitch

Cesare Casadei also headed home two minutes after the Chelsea loanee came on the pitch

The Foxes squad is bristling with talent and their third-choice keeper Danny Ward cost £12.5million.

Rotherham have paid money for one player — Sam Nombe from Exeter for £950,000 — since returning to the second tier.

Games like this won’t define the Millers’ season, but they have now not won an away league game since November 2022.

‘I thought the players were fantastic for 60 minutes,’ boss Leam Richardson said. ‘The first goal was disappointing and then we got emotionally attached to the game. Leicester will be a Premier League team.’

The Foxes controlled the ball from the start and Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall forced Viktor Johansson into a fine stop early on.

Abdul Fatawu — watched here by Ghana boss Chris Hughton ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations — was bright too, but Leicester could not find the breakthrough in the first half.

They came out with a renewed vigour after the break, with Sean Morrison making a stunning goal-line clearance when Sebastian Revan was dispossessed, as Daka somehow did not score, before the pressure told.

Wout Faes made an overlapping run and Johansson parried his effort. Wilfred Ndidi scuffed his shot, although it landed at the feet of Daka, who could not miss. Daka doubled the lead just five minutes later when he was fouled by Johansson after a poor back pass from Revan and the Zambian tucked home his penalty.

Leam Richardson thought Rotherham were good for an hour, before being undone by Foxes

Leam Richardson thought Rotherham were good for an hour, before being undone by Foxes

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The domination continued as Ricardo Pereira crossed for Casadei to head home, with the Chelsea loanee scoring two minutes after coming on. ‘The patience was very important again,’ Maresca added. ‘Against this type of team it’s complicated to find the solution and space and in the end we did the most difficult thing which is to find a goal.’

The Foxes eased through the rest and they will spend Christmas — and likely the rest of the season — top of the table.