Leicester City came from behind to beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-1 with goals from Kelechi Iheanacho and Timothy Castagne on Saturday to snap a 10-match run without a victory in all competitions and keep alive their Premier League survival bid.
Leicester had claimed one point from their previous nine league games and the long-awaited victory moved Dean Smith’s side out of the drop zone and up to 17th with 28 points — above Everton on goal difference. Wolves are 13th with 34 points.
Smith, who was appointed manager until the end of the season after Leicester sacked Brendan Rodgers, celebrated his first home match with a win despite the absence of playmaker James Maddison who missed the game due to illness.
“It was a hard-fought victory. I thought we created the bigger chances in the game. We started well, had a tough period and showed a lot of character in that second half,” Smith told the BBC.
Leicester were the better team in the opening stages but Wolves scored first against the run of play when Mario Lemina pinched the ball from an unsuspecting Youri Tielemans before finding Matheus Cunha who fired home in the 13th minute.
Leicester hit back seven minutes before halftime when Jamie Vardy was brought down in the box by goalkeeper Jose Sa and Iheanacho stepped up to calmly slot the penalty past the Portuguese keeper after sending him the wrong way.
“A lot of the goals we have given away, looking back at them, have been individual mistakes. From then up until the penalty their movement was sharper and brighter than ours,” Smith added.
Patson Daka had the opportunity to give Leicester the lead on a counter-attack 10 minutes into the second half but Sa was up to the task to keep him out with a reflex save while Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall’s shot from the rebound went over the bar.
Leicester’s sustained pressure finally paid off after 75 minutes when full back Victor Kristiansen found space down the left flank and cut the ball back for Castagne, who finished first time to give the home side the lead.
“You could see the fans were happy because we tried to play better football than before, more aggressive,” Castagne said.
“That is a big one today, everyone was thinking it was going to be tough. We have a bit more confidence and know we can do it.”
Leicester survived a VAR check for a handball in the box late in the game while the King Power Stadium crowd held their breath in the 88th minute when Wolves won a free kick and Ruben Neves stood over the ball.
But goalkeeper Daniel Iversen dived well to deny the midfielder’s shot that was heading for the top corner.