Unsung hero: Ricardo Pereira puts in flawless defensive performance that went under the radar

Unsung hero: Ricardo Pereira puts in flawless defensive performance that went under the radar

While Harvey Barnes, Youri Tielemans and Jamie Vardy all contributed to a massive win for Leicester on Saturday, it was a flawless performance at the other end of the pitch which is worthy of this week’s unsung hero.

With Leicester in the Premier League’s top four after nearly a quarter of the season gone, Ricardo Pereira truly needs no introduction. The full-back is currently Leicester’s most consistent player according to WhoScored; he has played every match and leads the average ratings with a huge score of 7.57/10.

While it was not a perfect performance from Leicester by any stretch, they were still able to come out victorious – something which many other teams around them aren’t able to do at the moment, such as Tottenham, who dropped points again.

According to WhoScored, Pereira was the second-best player on the pitch on Saturday, behind goalscorer Youri Tielemans. He had a match-rating of 8/10 for the Foxes.

Defensively, Pereira was very sound. Playing opposite Robbie Brady, Burnley’s left flank had little success throughout the whole match; Dwight McNeil, on the other wing, had much more joy against Ben Chilwell, being able to register an assist.

The Portuguese defender topped the charts for tackles in the match with five, posting a 100% success rate. Pereira recorded two clearances and made three interceptions – more than any other Leicester defender – as his side went onto win 2-1 (WhoScored).

While Jordan Blackwell at Leicestershire Live gave Ricardo Pereira just a 6/10 and critiquing his touch in the first half, he was still the only defender to be given more than 5 by the Leicester reporter.

While Pereira, with two goals to his name this season, may be more known for his offensive capabilities, Saturday provided great evidence for suggesting that he is fastly becoming one of the best right-backs in the division, showing that he is having success with every part of his game. WhoScored seems to agree, with their algorithm having him as the sixth-best player in the league based on his average rating, with him being the highest right-back in the division.

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