Mahrez extends Leicester's ideal start in Champions League

So far, Leicester City have been off to a ideal start in the Champions' League, having won all three of their opening group stage matches against the likes of Club Brugge, FC Porto and most recently (Tuesday evening), FC Copenhagen.

Leicester maintained their 100 per cent record in the Champions League with Tuesday's 1-0 win over Copenhagen, but have struggled in the Premier League.

And Kasper Schmeichel saved from Andreas Cornelius in the 90th minute as the Foxes ended Copenhagen's 23-match unbeaten run, which included eight Champions League matches, and extended the visitors' winless record in England to five matches.

" At this moment it's a priority because in the Premier League we must be safe at the end of the year, the Champions League is now", said the Italian, after benching Riyad Mahrez and Islam Slimani at the weekend.

"When you are playing in the Champions League, your mind is more concentrated, you are more focused on the match".

Leicester have already lost more games in the Premier League this season than they did in their title campaign - and conceded 14 goals.

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They have one more point in the Champions League than they do in the Premier League (8). We are Leicester, we are a good team when we play together and are compact. This is normal but we want to change this way.

After the half-time interval the hosts seemed to grow much stronger, with Claudio Ranieri's team-talk perhaps working its magic on the players. But it's OK, it's OK because also in my career this happened when for the first time you go and play in a big competition, you lose something when you go back in your league.

Ranieri is sweating on the fitness of striker Jamie Vardy (groin), captain Wes Morgan (hip) and midfielder Matty James (shin) for Saturday's Premier League game at home to Crystal Palace. Goals from Julian Weigl and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang were enough to see them past last year's Primeira Liga runners-up. We knew it would be tough, we knew we'd have to fight tonight. "Hopefully we can do a similar performance", Copenhagen coach Stale Solbakken said.

The decision would have proved costly were it not for Schmeichel's reflexes, the Denmark worldwide producing a superb save to deny countryman Cornelius from grabbing a late equaliser and preserve his third straight Champions League clean sheet.

"Leicester" got a chance to loudly announce itself in the Champions League.

In the last minute, Santander's low cross from the left picked out Cornelius, but Schmeichel produced a superb one-handed reflex save to keep his countrymen at bay.

  • Lawrence Cooper