Watford 1-2 Leicester City: Three Foxes Positives and Negatives

Leicester City again defeated their opponents on their travels. Enzo Maresca will have plenty to be happy about, and here are a couple of reasons he should be happy, and one for supporters to be concerned with.
Stoke City v Leicester City - Sky Bet Championship
Stoke City v Leicester City - Sky Bet Championship / Neal Simpson/Allstar/GettyImages

A 1-2 victory on the road over Watford sees the Foxes remain defiantly at the top of the Championship table. The King Power side can see the match as containing two positives and one negative: points gap retention, the return of Dennis Praet, and team selection.

Leicester City's dominant points gap

31 games played, 75 points gained, 11 points clear at the summit of the Championship. Contrast that with the dysmal performance of the prior campaign and you can only weep with joy that Enzo Maresca has galvanised what could have been a sinking ship, and got it sailing right back on course. Back to the Premier League.

With that defining lead against second, the Foxes should hopefully stay on top unless something rather frustrating happens in terms of the squad or results start to go against the King Power side. On top of this, to fall out of the play-off spots, there is a 28 point gap for Leicester to lose and their opponents to gain. Suffice to say, that would mean losing most of our remaining fixtures, which seems unlikely.

Defeating Watford puts the side in a favourable position against their nearest rivals, who still have to play one another before facing Leicester again too. For the rest of the division, there should be few challenges and more points in store for Maresca's blue army.

The return of Dennis Praet

The Belgian midfielder Praet is a decent player. Signed under Brendan Rodgers to bring depth to midfield and work alongside sensational Youri Tielemans, the attacking-midfielder performed well, but lacked any flare and did not particularly shine against any of his competitors for the position - namely James Maddison.

For some reason, the player was retained this campaign despite the lack of support Praet has within the club to get him playing for the Foxes. Nevertheless, Praet is clearly better than the Championship, and seeing the Belgian back in the side brings warm feelings and regret over his prior lack of game time. He played well, was creative, and can certainly do more as games come fast.

Team selection

Strangely, we saw team changes from the utterly destructive 5-0 routing of Stoke City. Jannik Vestergaard was a necessary change due to injury, but to bring in Dennis Praet over Stephy Mavidid and play Kasey McAteer and Abdul Fatawu out of their most productive positions to accommodate the change is a little... well, it was unnecessary.

Enzo Maresca has had small complaints over substitutions over recent games, and this will end up being no different. Against Watford, it would have been more reassuring to either make significant changes if resting players was a priority, but if the priorty is to assure victory, McAteer should have played in midfield and Mavididi should have remained in the side.

It is also worth noting that Yunus Akgun has been productive in recent matches, and can also play in either right wing or attacking midfield, so this could have been a better choice over playing Praet, even if the Belgian deserved the chance to play for the Foxes. On top of this, it will be difficult to see how Kelechi Iheanacho makes his way back into the team with Tom Cannon and Patson Daka performing as they are.