Tielemans sparks Leicester into life in Carabao Cup cruise over MK Dons | Carabao Cup

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This went exactly how Brendan Rodgers planned it. Thirty-eight days after their last competitive fixture, Leicester made light work of an MK Dons side with bigger battles to fight as they eased into the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup courtesy of goals from Youri Tielemens, Ayoze Pérez and Jamie Vardy.

An emphatic victory over a League One team struggling against relegation may not be the most significant of his managerial career but after their terrible start to the season, Rodgers will understand its importance. A sizeable contingent of away fans who had made the short journey down the M1 and packed out their end here certainly went home feeling happy, with some even predicting Leicester could be on their way to Wembley again after their FA Cup triumph 18 months ago. “We go into all the cup competitions thinking we have got a chance,” admitted Leicester’s assistant manager, Chris Davies. “It’s a case of trying to build momentum now before the next round.”

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With four victories from their last five matches before the break, Rodgers was clearly hoping that his players could pick up where they had left off by selecting a strong side that featured five who represented their countries at the World Cup in his starting line-up, although there was no sign of England’s James Maddison.

In the absence of caretaker Dean Lewington as he had surgery on a hamstring injury, it was Bradley Johnson in the opposing dugout instead as the former Leeds and Norwich midfielder dropped himself from the team that beat Portsmouth 2-0 at the weekend.

MK Dons’ five-man defence managed to stand firm for almost 20 minutes in the face of concerted pressure from Leicester straight from the kick-off. However, Tielemens was on hand to slot home after Jamie Cumming’s save to deny a clever flick from Vardy following a cross from Harvey Barnes, the loose ball fell straight to the Belgian. A momentary lapse in concentration from his compatriot Wout Faes almost gifted the hosts an equaliser when the defender miscued his clearance and then seemed to bring down Daniel Harvey, only for referee Andre Marriner to wave away the appeals.

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Adams double sees Saints progress

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Che Adams scored twice as Southampton marked Nathan Jones’ first home match as manager by scraping into the Carabao Cup quarter-finals with an unconvincing 2-1 win over Lincoln. 
Top scorer Adams struck either side of half-time to spare Saints blushes after the Imps threatened an upset following Gavin Bazunu’s early own goal. 
The lacklustre hosts laboured for much of a forgettable fourth-round tie at a sparsely-populated St Mary’s, leaving Jones with plenty to ponder as he plots a Premier League survival mission. 
Adams’ winner – his eighth goal of the season – arrived 16 minutes from time, preventing the jeopardy of a penalty shootout, which Saints had required to sneak past third-tier Sheffield Wednesday in the previous round. 
Lincoln, who sit 14th in Sky Bet League One and beat Championship Bristol City in round three, acquitted themselves well and will probably leave the south coast feeling aggrieved as replays suggested Adams’ 25th-minute equaliser was offside. 
Saints substitute Samuel Edozie squandered a golden chance to make the result safe in added time when he somehow shot wide of an open goal, while match-winner Adams should have claimed a hat-trick with another excellent opening.

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Less than 60 seconds later and the ball was in the net at the other end after a sumptuous piece of control to bring down a cross from Luke Thomas followed by a brilliant curling finish from Pérez. Tennai Watson then wasted a golden opportunity to pull one back on the stroke of half-time when he ballooned his shot over the bar.

Yet any faint hopes of a comeback were immediately extinguished after the break when Vardy finished off a brilliant cross from Timothy Castagne with a deft header.

Having so far only managed one in the Premier Leaguethis campaign, it was a welcome return to form for the 35-year-old who signed a contract extension for an extra season in August. Whether that may take in another European tour will depend on Rodgers’ side maintaining this kind of form. But, as all Leicester fans will tell you, stranger things have happened

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