Izzet Going To Get Worse ?

Muzzy Izzet celebratesChelsea 0-2 Leicester City
Izzet 7, Collymore 82
FA Carling Premiership


New Chelsea head coach Claudio Ranieri will have been fully aware that he faced a tough task taking over from Gianluca Vialli at Stamford Bridge.

Just quite how massive a job lies before him will now be horribly apparent after a torrid afternoon for the Blues as they stumbled to their second league defeat of the season.

Goals in each half from Muzzy Izzet and Stan Collymore gave the Foxes a richly deserved victory - their first at the Bridge for 34 years - and lifted them to joint top of the table.

Equally worrying for the home side was the incident in the first-half when team-mates Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and Christian Panucci were involved in a furious row.

While the referee was booking Dennis Wise and izzet after a midfield tussle, the Dutchman stormed down the pitch and furiously shouted at Panucci before throwing the ball away, and then debutant Winston Bogarde had to step in as peacemaker.

The Chelsea claims about no dressing room unrest will ring a little hollow after that particular spat.

It took Peter Taylor's men less than 10 minutes to go ahead as Neil Lennon whipped in a cross from the right flank, and former Chelsea midfielder Muzzy Izzet nipped between Bogarde and Marcel Desailly to head home.

Passes were going astray as the home side struggled to get back in the game, and there was little width and the final ball was routinely being wasted.

Chelsea did manage to stir themselves from their lethargy for the second-half but again the finishing was profligate.

Tore Andre Flo volleyed straight at Tim Flowers, before Hasselbaink crashed a header against the bar from Graeme Le Saux's cross, with Flo unable to capitalise on the rebound.

Matt Elliott headed a cross by Steve Guppy narrowly wide on the counter-attack before . Leicester substitute Stan Collymore made the points safe late.

He latched on to another telling Steve Guppy cross to bury the ball past Cudicini, and signal a mass evacuation of the home end.

Ranieri said this week that if there were roses they would bloom. It would appear he will have to do an awful lot of weeding first.

Chelsea: Cudicini, Panucci (Melchiot 90), Desailly, Bogarde, Hasselbaink (Gudjohnsen 78), Wise, Le Saux, Di Matteo, Flo, Morris, Zola.
Subs Not Used: Hitchcock, Terry, Harley.
Booked: Wise, Morris, Hasselbaink.

Leicester: Flowers, Rowett, Izzet, Lennon, R. Savage, Eadie (Collymore 69), Guppy (Davidson 84), Gilchrist, Elliott, Akinbiyi (Cresswell 70), Impey.
Subs Not Used: Sinclair, Royce.
Booked: Izzet.
Goals: Izzet 8, Collymore 82.

Att: 33,697

Ref: G Barber (Tring).



Ray Wilkins New Chelsea head coach Claudio Ranieri attempted to reassure his new team that there was no need to panic after a morale-sapping home defeat saw them booed off for the second successive game.

Ray Wilkins, who translated for the new coach, said: "Mr Ranieri popped in before the game to speak to the players and to express how he likes his teams to perform and that is with maximum spirit and to give 150% every time they step on the pitch.

"He popped in again after the game and said that what he'd seen on the pitch was a group of fellas that were prepared to give their utmost for Chelsea.

"He said these things happen when a group of players have lost their manager. He is well aware that naturally the morale of the players goes down a touch. But he was very pleased with the attitude of the players."

Peter Taylor revealed he offered Jody Morris some words of comfort on the final whistle.

He said: "Their heads went down a little bit and maybe this doesn't seem a very happy place at the moment.

"I saw little Jody Morris nearly crying as he came off the pitch. I went up to him and told him to keep his head up and to keep believing as he's a great player with a great future."

He added: "There's a great spirit at Leicester and that's down to the players. They're a great bunch and it's a very happy place to be at the moment."

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