Gary Lineker tore into his beloved Leicester City after producing an ’embarrassing’ display in the first half against Fulham at Craven Cottage on Monday. The Foxes were desperate to pick up three points with the threat of relegation looming over them, but Dean Smith’s side put in a woeful performance in the first half as Fulham ran riot in front of their home fans.
The Cottagers raced out of the blocks early on to take a two-goal lead through their brilliant Brazilian pair of Willian and Carlos Vinicius as Leicester were carved open at will. And not before long, Tom Cairney added to the misery with a third just before half-time.
Lineker, a loyal Leicester fan who has been spotted at the King Power Stadium on several occasions this season, was clearly furious with what he was witnessing after a dismal first half for Leicester, who are only out of the relegation zone on goal difference.
And the Match of the Day presenter made it clear in no uncertain terms how he felt about his side, tweeting to his 8.9 million followers: “This is embarrassing”, with a facepalm emoji to perfectly sum up his disapproval.
Whether Smith’s players saw his tweet at half-time for motivation or not is unclear, but Leicester improved after the break.
They would concede first, however, before springing into life, with Cairney bagging his second of the afternoon before Harvey Barnes got one back for the visitors.
Leicester then had a golden chance to give themselves a glimmer of hope in west London when they were awarded a penalty, but Jamie Vardy was denied superbly by Bernd Leno in the Fulham goal.
And the relegation-threatened side would pay a heavy price for that miss as Willian scored his second and Fulham’s fifth of the afternoon to pile on the misery.
James Maddison stepped up and converted a second Leicester penalty of the day and Barnes notched a second to make it 5-3 late on, but the game was over as a contest long before then.
The result will only increase the tension at the Midlands club, with Everton playing away at Brighton and Nottingham Forest due to face rock-bottom Southampton.
If both sides win, Leicester will drop to 18th in the standings and would be three points adrift with only three games left to play.
Lineker has seen his team relegated once before, but just seven years after their historic Premier League triumph, the 61-year-old’s club are in deep trouble after being thrashed by five-star Fulham.