Rangers were taught a lesson, on numerous levels, as they were overcome by their full-time opponents. Leicester City U23s visited Marston Road as part of the Josh Gordon deal, who has recently extended his deal.
However, fortune could have been on Rangers’ side as early as the fifth minute when Leicester defender Alex Pascanu misplaced a back pass and that had ‘keeper Viktor Johannson back pedalling to clear the ball as he chased back to his goal.
The Foxes started to move the ball around and in the tenth minute, Keirnan Dewsbury-Hall struck a straight forward shot from the edge of the box and keeper Mare Deczki failed to handle the ball as it slipped through his grasp and into the corner for a one-nil lead to the visitors.
Rangers briefly hit back with a decent move, but Cuff sliced his shot wide. Leicester started to get into their flow as Layton Ndukwu fired a free kick into the wall before shooting over, while Ryan Loft was released down the right channel before firing across goal. More good approach play saw a Loft backheel easily saved, before the second goal arrived as Ndukwu approached Rangers’ box unchallenged and struck a shot into the bottom corner.
A further shot from Loft was well saved and the follow up was off target and another good move followed, with Josh Gordon involved, as Ndukwu again fired just off target. Leicester’s good ball play was interspersed with spells of Rangers possession that unluckily had no end results. Louis Briscoe stepped up to fire in a long-range free kick and this proved to be their only on target effort of the first half, as Leicester finished on top with a Loft effort saved just before half time.
The second half started in similar fashion as Josh Knight shot over, before his next effort was saved, soon after. With a couple of half time changes in place, Rangers started to move the ball a little e better and enjoyed a spell of possession.
In the sixty-forth minute another move into the final third saw Loft increase the lead to three-nil as Loft found the top corner with a shot from inside the box. Rangers rallied and a move down the right culminated in a second half trialist cut in and just cleared the bar with his effort.
The dangerous Ndukwu threatened again as he hit the side netting from a 25-yard free kick, then a run and shot across goal. Loft was then denied by a double block from Luke jones and Deczki before the same player broke into the box and was pushed over giving the referee no choice but to point to the spot and Ndukwu made no mistake converting for his second of the night.
Rangers had the last effort of the game as Abadaki was brought down and Green’s free kick was caught under the bar as the whistle was blown for full time.
Manager Steve Burr was pragmatic in his summary of the evening – “It was a really good work out against an excellent side, with all their players pushing for a place in the Premier League. I was disappointed with the first two goals as they knocked the stuffing out of us but we had to acknowledge we were up against a very good outfit that would punish us at every chance. We now look to our final friendly at Market Drayton and I still have another couple of players to talk to about deals.”
You can come along to Marston Road on Thursday 16th August from 6.30pm where there will be a photo shoot, an open training session and a ‘meet the manager and players’ session.