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Shakespeare: Set plays cost us

Sky Sports logo Sky Sports 12/08/2017


Watch: Shakespeare takes heart from defeat (Provided by Sky News)

Craig Shakespeare says conceding from set plays cost Leicester a victory against Arsenal on Friday rather than substitutions.

The Foxes twice went ahead against the Gunners in the Premier League curtain raiser, live on Sky Sports Premier League, but eventually lost the game 4-3 after two late goals, both of which came from corners.

Manager Shakespeare was quizzed about his tactics and substitutions following the match - with Kelechi Iheanacho sent on just before the third equalising goal from a corner by Aaron Ramsey - after a few formation changes during the game.

"I think when teams make substitutions from the corners, it can cause a bit of confusion. That's not making any excuses because when subs go on, they are given jobs and I expect them to pass on information," he told Sky Sports.

"If you look at the third goal, I'm a bit disappointed with the handball leading up to it but that aside, once you get the corner, you have to defend it better.

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"I don't know whether it was a lack of concentration or just a lack of game management in the last ten minutes, but you then concede again from a set play in terms of being overpowered. We need to show a bit more resilience there.

"I went to a three-man midfield to get us a screen because Mesut Ozil was playing in the pockets and I wanted Wilfred Ndidi to get in and around him. I then wanted Wilfred and Daniel Amartey to get up close to their midfield players and for Iheanacho to have the space in the last ten minutes to get on the back of Granit Xhaka.

"Of course, I have to look at my own decisions but you make those decisions for the right reasons. Ultimately, it wasn't that which cost us, it was the set plays."

Always one to look for the positives, Shakespeare was full of praise for new singing Harry Maguire - making his league debut for Leicester - while Jamie Vardy's double was also a plus point.

"I've been really impressed with Harry since he came in. I was keen on the recruitment side to get a British player with Premier League experience," the manager added.

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"Harry is very young and I think he'll get better. He has been very impressive in pre-season and you saw tonight, I think he will be a great signing for us.

"Jamie has been back to his old self, as people would say. We've been encouraging him to play to his strengths, which is getting in behind and being a nuisance on the defenders but also getting into the box to score goals. You saw with the desire to get on the end of the corner, he was terrific."


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