Wednesday 22 January 2020

Danny Simpson hails Leicester squad strength as Foxes cope with Jamie Vardy loss

Leicester's Jamie Vardy reacts to referee Jon Moss after being sent off in the 2-2 draw with West Ham
Leicester's Jamie Vardy reacts to referee Jon Moss after being sent off in the 2-2 draw with West Ham

Danny Simpson is confident Jamie Vardy's continued absence will not stop Leicester from possibly wrapping up the title at Manchester United this weekend.

The 29-year-old England striker missed Sunday's 4-0 trouncing of Swansea after been sent off the previous weekend, having picked up a second booking against West Ham for an apparent dive.

Vardy's furious reaction to referee Jon Moss led to further punishment, with the Football Association hitting the striker with a £10,000 fine and an extra one-match ban for improper conduct.

Leicester were also fined £20,000 after admitting a charge of failing to ensure their players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion following the award of an 83rd-minute penalty, but it is their top scorer's punishment which has created ripples.

However, Simpson believes Claudio Ranieri's men will cope without Vardy once more this weekend, when victory at 20-time champions United would seal the title.

"I think we have just sent a message to everyone who has been a bit negative about us," the defender said of the Swansea win.

"We have players who can come in and do well. Leo (Ulloa) was man of the match and Jeff (Schlupp) has come in and was excellent.

"Demarai Gray came on and what a cameo it was from him and Marc Albrighton as well. It is all about the squad.

"Yeah, we have had a settled team but we have always known the players who are trying to get in the team can do well."

It looks a case of when rather than if Leicester win the title following second-placed Tottenham's surprise 1-1 draw at home to West Brom on Monday.

Winning the title this weekend at Old Trafford would be particularly special for Simpson and team-mate Danny Drinkwater, having both come through the United youth system.

"Me and Drinky have spoken about it a little bit and said it is a big game," the full-back said.

"Whenever we are going to Old Trafford for us it is a big game.

"We want to enjoy it and are looking forward to working hard this week and going to Old Trafford to try and perform again and get the three points."

PA Media

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