iPro Stadium

Next Game

Derby v Bolton

Saturday, 07 February 2015, 15:00

Sky Bet Ch'ship

Cardiff City Stadium

Last Game

Cardiff 0 - 2 Derby

Saturday, 31 January 2015, 15:00

Sky Bet Ch'ship

Pearson won't let focus waver

Nigel Pearson is confident the contract situation at Leicester will not get in the way of his side's promotion challenge.

Last Updated: 11/01/14 at 07:45 Post Comment

Wes Morgan: Celebrates after Jamie Vardy scores to make it 4-1

Wes Morgan: Celebrates after Jamie Vardy scores to make it 4-1

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

The Foxes boss and 10 members of his first-team squad are set to see their current deals expire in the summer.

Captain Wes Morgan, one of the players affected, last week voiced his fears that other clubs will attempt to take advantage of the uncertainty and try to lure some of City's best players away.

But Pearson does not see what the big issue is.

"It's something that's going to keep cropping up but a lot of clubs will be in a similar position," said Pearson after Leicester stretched their lead at the top of the Sky Bet Championship to seven points with a 4-1 home victory over east midlands rivals Derby.

"It's a common occurance in football and nothing out of the ordinary. But progress has been made in certain areas regarding that issue and players' representatives are in discussions with the club.

"But the important thing is we keep our focus on the job in hand.

"You don't often get this opportunity in this division to be a front-runner the way we are and we need to keep winning games and moving forward.

"It's an opportunity for us all and hopefully the players will want to stay part of it."

On his own future, Pearson added: "I don't need any reassurance, nor am I seeking any. I'm quite happy with the situation I'm in."

On the matter of contracts, Pearson is hopeful of getting deals over the line for La Havre winger Riyad Mahrez and veteran striker Kevin Phillips, whose deal with Crystal Palace will end this weekend.

"Hopefully he (Mahrez) will be done in the next 24 hours," said Pearson.

"There's no such news (on Phillips) but we are certainly very interested in him."

On the pitch Leicester simply outplayed Derby.

Pearson's league leaders looked every bit promotion candidates - even title contenders - on Friday night.

Richie De Laet's first goal in just over a year gave them the half-time lead, but the advantage could have been much greater as Jamie Vardy and Liam Moore saw efforts strike the crossbar.

A David Nugent double and a deserved goal for Vardy saw the Foxes send out a warning to the rest of the division, with the response particularly impressive after Derby had halved their arrears through a De Laet own goal.

Asked if it was Leicester's best performance of the season, Pearson said: "One of them, both as a team and individually.

"Derby are a good team but we got the balance right. We worked very hard and some of our attacking play was very, very good.

"When they got the goal back it was important we responded as quickly as we did because if we didn't then the feel of game may have been different.

"All in all it's a very good day for us. When you play ahead of the rest of the programme it's always nice to take advantage of it, and we played well and deserved it."

Derby head coach Steve McClaren acknowledged his team were well off the pace and felt Sunday's FA Cup tie with Chelsea was a contributing factor.

"I don't like to lose or lose in the manner we did," said the former England manager.

"Leicester are a very good team and top of table and on that performance you can see why, but we were well below our best - that wasn't the Derby team of recent months.

"But you can't maintain that sort of form all the time, you know you're going to have dips.

"To come to Leicester you need to be at your best, and tonight we weren't.

"I'm not making excuses but the Chelsea game took a lot out of us.

"I felt this game was always going to be too soon, and it proved the case. It took a lot out of us physically and emotionally.

"But it's hard to criticise the boys because they have been terrific since we came in."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

S

o Brendan is full of sh!t, who'd have thought it eh?

fatbob30
Carroll accuses Rodgers

P

resumably, you wanted to keep the version of Downing that was never seen at Anfield. The one that another manager has managed to re-create. The one you passed over.

badwolf
Rodgers: I wanted to keep Downing

T

he uber commercialisation of the 90s has led to the point where this overly familar, try hard, jolly hockey sticks type fronts up a major football match on a weekly basis. Unlike the great presenters of yesteryear, I doubt he would even recognise the scent of Brut.

mufc phil
Football On TV: Jake Humphrey

Footer 365

Nemanja Matic says Chelsea happy to maintain their five-point Premier League lead

Midfielder Nemanja Matic was happy to take a point after Chelsea's 1-1 draw with Manchester City.

Roberto Martinez delighted with 'immense' Everton's 1-0 win at Crystal Palace

Roberto Martinez believes his side can now reach their true potential after ending their winless run at Crystal Palace.

Premier League: Chelsea maintain five-point lead after 1-1 draw with Manchester City

Chelsea remain five points clear at the top of the Premier League after a 1-1 draw with second-placed Manchester City.

Mail Box

'Costa Is A Bad Man. Suarez Is Not'

That's quite some claim. And yes, unfortunately we are still talking about this. We also have mails on Ronaldinho, possible replacements for Yaya Toure and more...

Red Mist Better Than Calculated Costa?

Hmmm. We're not sure about this argument - one Mailbox says Luis Suarez is easier to forgive because he is a little loco. We also have mails on Studge and more...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company