Leicester City v Hull City preview: a battle for survival?

3 March 2017

Hull City travel to Leicester on Saturday as both sides continue to fight against relegation to the Championship, writes Aaron Irwin.

The reigning champions are in danger of becoming the first side in Premier League history to go down the season after winning it. They have ex-Hull assistant Craig Shakespeare is in caretaker charge of the Foxes after they sacked Claudio Ranieri last week.

Tigers boss Marco Silva will be looking to continue his encouraging start to life at the KCOM Stadium by gaining three points over their relegation rivals. They sit in the bottom three with 21 points from 26 games.

After a tough fixture schedule, which saw City play the likes of Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea, the Tigers can now focus on picking up points over the Foxes. While Hull picked up an admirable amount of points against the top sides, Silva’s key concern now will be to win in these ‘six pointers.’

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Winger Sam Clucas is back in contention after serving his ban for his sending off against Arsenal. He could be joined by Lazar Markovic, with the on loan winger returning to training this week.

Meanwhile City are missing a host of players, with Evandro (calf) and Dieumerci Mbokani (hamstring) joining Michael Dawson (calf), Curtis Davies (hamstring) and Markus Henriksen (shoulder) on the sidelines.

Ryan Mason, Will Keane and Moses Odubajo are all long term absentees and will likely be out for the rest of the season.

Leicester are likely to name an unchanged side from the one that beat Liverpool 3-1 on Monday night. Their only immediate injury concern is Molla Wague, who injured his shoulder during the Foxes’ FA Cup exit at Millwall.

Maguire for England?

City centre half Harry Maguire is to be assessed ahead of the game after picking up a knee injury in the 1-1 draw with Burnley.

Meanwhile boss Marco Silva and central defensive partner Andrea Ranocchia have both backed Maguire to be called up to the England national team.

When asked about Maguire, Silva said:

“It’s not my decision, but first of all I hope so. What I’ve seen of Harry in the last two months, I think he’ll play as soon as possible in the national team.”

Ranocchia also had his say on his team mate: “I expect him to make progress not just at Hull but for his country as well.”

There have also been calls for Maguire to get a contract extension, with the 23 year old putting in some impressive performances in the absence of Curtis Davies and Michael Dawson.

Here’s what Twitter thought of the importance of Maguire’s contract extension:

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