Jamie Vardy converted two penalties in Leicester City's clinical 3-0 win at West Brom and matched a Premier League record set by Ruud van Nistelrooy.

Last season's Golden Boot winner converted from the spot in the 74th and 84th minutes at the Hawthorns, after debutant Timothy Castagne gave Brendan Rodgers' side the lead early in the second half.

Right-back Castagne headed in a smartly hoisted cross from Dennis Praet for the 56th-minute breakthrough goal, before Vardy was brought down by Kyle Bartley and slotted his first penalty low into the left corner.

The 33-year-old added a second successful spot-kick for good measure, finding the same corner after Dara O'Shea clipped James Justin, making it a painful first game back in the top flight for Slaven Bilic's Albion.

Vardy has now scored in all five of his Premier League away games against West Brom, and only Van Nistelrooy has played as many matches against one team in the competition and scored each time.

Former Manchester United striker Van Nistelrooy faced Newcastle five times at St James' Park, with the Dutchman scoring on every visit.

Premier League Golden Boot winner Jamie Vardy has signed a new three-year deal with Leicester City.

The former England striker has been a revelation since joining the Foxes from Fleetwood Town in 2012, playing a huge part in their 2015-16 Premier League title triumph.

Vardy had just under two years to run on his previous contract, but the 33-year-old has agreed terms to extend his stay at the King Power Stadium by a further season.

"The journey that I've been on with this football club is hard to describe, and although we've accomplished so much together already, I know that I've got so much more to achieve with this team, so it's a special feeling to be able to commit my future to Leicester City once again," Vardy told the club's official website.

"I love playing my football in front of our fans at King Power Stadium and I'm delighted to continue this journey at such an exciting time for the club.

"We've a fantastic team that I believe is capable of getting even better and I can't wait to see what we can achieve together in the next few years."

The clinical Vardy was the leading goalscorer in the top flight with 23 in 35 appearances for Brendan Rodgers' side, who finished fifth last season.

Leicester announced his deal just a couple of days after midfielder James Maddison ended speculation over his future by signing a new four-year contract amid reports England left-back Ben Chilwell is set to join Chelsea.

Premier League Golden Boot winner Jamie Vardy has signed a new three-year deal with Leicester City.

The former England striker has been a revelation since joining the Foxes from Fleetwood Town in 2012, playing a huge part in their 2015-16 Premier League title triumph.

Vardy had just under two years to run on his previous contract, but the 33-year-old has agreed terms to extend his stay at the King Power Stadium by a further season.

The clinical Vardy was the leading goalscorer in the top flight with 23 in 35 appearances for Brendan Rodgers' side, who finished fifth last season.

Leicester announced his deal just a couple of days after midfielder James Maddison ended speculation over his future by signing a new four-year contract amid reports England left-back Ben Chilwell is set to join Chelsea.

Liverpool dominate the nominations for the Premier League Player of the Season, Young Player of the Season and Manager of the Season awards for 2019-20.

Football Writers' Association Footballer of the Year Jordan Henderson, along with team-mates Trent Alexander-Arnold and Sadio Mane, are up for the league's Player of the Season prize.

Manchester City star Kevin De Bruyne, Golden Boot winner Jamie Vardy, Southampton striker Danny Ings and Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope are the other nominees.

Alexander-Arnold is also up for the inaugural Young Player of the Season, as are Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish and Chelsea duo Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount.

There are four Manchester United players on the shortlist: Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood and Dean Henderson, who is on loan at Sheffield United.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp leads the nominees for the Manager of the Season prize, with Leicester City's Brendan Rodgers and Sheffield United's Chris Wilder also selected.

Frank Lampard, who took Chelsea to a fourth-place finish and lost the FA Cup final to Arsenal, is the other nominee.

Each award will be decided through a combination of fan votes and input from a panel of experts.

Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk was named the Player of the Season in 2018-19, while Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has won the manager's accolade for the past two campaigns.

The Premier League's longest season yet concluded on Sunday with Liverpool champions for the first time.

The Reds were comfortable in ending a 30-year wait for a top-flight title, but there was drama until the closing minutes of the final day.

Manchester United and Chelsea can celebrate Champions League qualification as the division's strugglers reflect on their contrasting fortunes.

Meanwhile, with the help of Opta data, we look at some of the quirkiest numbers from the 2019-20 campaign.


5 - David Luiz conceded five penalties in the Premier League this season, the most a player has ever given away in a single season in the competition.

167 - Jack Grealish was fouled 167 times in the 2019-20 Premier League, the most fouls won by a player in a single campaign on record (since 1998-99).

24 - Scott McTominay now has the fastest Premier League yellow card on record. He was booked just 24 seconds into Manchester United's December home win against Newcastle United.

2000 - It was a season of milestones for McTominay, who scored Manchester United's 2000th Premier League goal against Norwich City in October. They became the first club to the landmark.

27 - The Norwich class of 2019-20 became the only side not to record a single point from a losing position in Premier League history. They lost all 27 matches in which they fell behind.

4 - Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard's fourth-placed finish is the highest finish for an English manager in their debut Premier League season since Frank Clark's Nottingham Forest came third in 1994-95.

2 - Lampard's season ended well, but September's 2-1 defeat to Liverpool made him just the second Chelsea boss - after Bobby Campbell in 1988 - to lose his first four home matches in all competitions.

33 - At the age of 33, Jamie Vardy became the oldest player to win the Premier League Golden Boot, scoring 23 goals in 2019-20.

5 - Virgil van Dijk became just the fifth outfield player to play every minute for a Premier League title-winning side, following Gary Pallister (1992-93), John Terry (2014-15), Wes Morgan (2015-16) and Cesar Azpilicueta (2016-17).

2013 - Anthony Martial's June hat-trick against Sheffield United was Manchester United's first in the Premier League since Robin van Persie scored three against Aston Villa in April 2013.

7 - Martial and Marcus Rashford assisted one another a combined seven times in this season's Premier League, the most of any pairing in a single edition of the competition for Manchester United.

49 - All 49 clubs to have played in the Premier League have conceded at least one hat-trick after Raheem Sterling's three-goal haul against Brighton and Hove Albion in July.

14 - Manchester United won 14 penalties in the 2019-20 season, the most a team has ever won in a single Premier League campaign.

29 - Harry Kane is the only player to face more than one club in the Premier League and score against them all, with Sheffield United the 29th he netted against.

15 - Kevin De Bruyne ended the season with a joint-record 20 assists - tied with Thierry Henry - but he became the first player to set up 15 goals in three separate Premier League campaigns.

93 - Tottenham went a record 93 games without a goalless draw before they were held 0-0 by Watford in January.

Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy has become the Premier League's oldest Golden Boot winner at the age of 33 after finishing the 2019-20 season with 23 goals.

Vardy fired a blank in Leicester's 2-0 loss against Manchester United on Sunday - a result that saw the Foxes miss out on a top-four finish - to make it three games without a goal to see out the season.

However, the ex-England international still finished a goal clear of Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Danny Ings of Southampton at the top of the scoring charts.

He overtakes Didier Drogba, who netted 29 goals for Chelsea in 2009-10 at the age of 32, as the oldest recipient of the award.

Aubameyang shared the accolade with Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah last season, though the Liverpool pair finished this campaign with 18 and 19 goals respectively. 

 

The Premier League season concludes on Sunday, with Liverpool completing their victory lap at Newcastle United.

A dominant campaign from Jurgen Klopp's men means the destination of the big prize has long been decided, although there are still the matters of Champions League qualification and relegation to address.

The remaining top-four berths will go to two of Chelsea, Leicester City and Manchester United – with the latter two playing each other at the King Power Stadium in Sunday's standout clash.

At the other end of the table, two of Aston Villa, Watford and Bournemouth will be joining Norwich City in the Championship next season.

However, as we examine below, there are individual awards and achievements still up for grabs.

 

Vardy leads the way in Golden Boot race

A goal from Jamie Vardy against United could represent a huge step towards Europe's elite competition for Leicester City, while it will almost certainly mean the Golden Boot for the former England striker.

Vardy is on 23 goals, in a landmark campaign that saw him being up 100 in the Premier League. Of the 29 players to have reached a century in the competition, only Ian Wright (28 years, 286 days) made his debut at an older age than Vardy (27 years, 232).

The main competition comes from Danny Ings, whose 21 goal makes him the third Southampton player to score 20 or more in a Premier League season, following Matt Le Tissier (25) in 1993-94 and James Beattie (23) in 2002-03.

Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang is next in line on 20. The Gabon international has also enjoyed a landmark campaign, becoming the sixth fastest player to 50 Premier League goals in history as he did so on his 79th top-flight outing for Arsenal.

Liverpool superstar Mohamed Salah and Raheem Sterling are the outsiders on 19 apiece. If Sterling nets against Norwich, he will become the first Englishman to score 20 times in a top-division season for Manchester City since Brian Kidd – now a member of Pep Guardiola's backroom staff – did so in 1976-77.

 

De Bryune hunting Henry's assist record

One man in particular will be keen on Sterling adding to his haul – provided it comes from one of his passes!

Kevin De Bruyne has 19 assists in the Premier League this season, placing him one shy of Thierry Henry's competition record.

Arsenal's Mesut Ozil also assisted 19 times during 2015-16.

De Bruyne has been directly involved in 30 league goals this term, scoring 11 alongside his creative exploits. This is the most for a central midfield since Frank Lampard scored 22 and supplied 14 assists for Chelsea in 2009-10.

The efforts of Sterling and De Bruyne have gone a long way to placing City close to an impressive collective feat. If Guardiola's side score three times against Norwich, they will reach 100 goals for a third consecutive Premier League season.

 

Ederson and Pope battle it out for Golden Glove

Another City player looking after number one on Sunday is their number one. Ederson is on 15 clean sheets, putting him level in the Golden Glove standings with Burnley's Nick Pope.

The Clarets end another excellent season at home to Brighton and Hove Albion and if Ederson and Pope cannot be separated at full-time the award will be shared.

Both men have a similar save percentage, with Pope stopping 70.7 per cent of efforts sent his way compared to Ederson's 69.6, but the Englishman has been far busier.

Pope has made 118 saves from 164 shots faced, compared to Ederson's 64 from 92.

Although impressive, neither man has been flawless, with Ederson committing three errors leading to goals and Pope culpable for two.

Mikel Arteta was left bemused by what he felt were VAR inconsistencies after Jamie Vardy escaped a red card during Arsenal's 1-1 draw with Leicester City on Tuesday.

The Gunners looked to be heading for a fourth successive Premier League win after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's first-half opener, but Eddie Nketiah's straight red 15 minutes from time – shortly after coming off the bench – gave Leicester encouragement.

Nketiah caught James Justin with a high boot to the knee and a VAR check led to the striker's dismissal, but Arteta felt it highlighted inconsistency.

Vardy, who went on to score a late equaliser, had been involved in an incident just before half-time where his flailing foot caught Shkodran Mustafi in the face as the pair fell to the floor.

Despite the presence of VAR, the former England striker avoided punishment, but Arteta thinks he should have been dismissed.

"I have my opinion, I prefer to keep it like this," he said. "What I am saying is, if you review incidents of that type, you should review them all.

"If Eddie's is a red card then for sure the other is a red card. If [Nketiah] can be a red card then Leicester has to play with 10 men after 42 minutes – that has to be a red card as well."

Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers claimed to have not seen the incident involving Vardy, though he was adamant Nketiah's sending off was justified for "a horrific challenge".

"To be honest, I can't even remember that one," he said. "I haven't seen it to be honest, I didn't even think about looking at it afterwards.

"Obviously, Mikel will have his feelings of it but like I said with Eddie, it wasn't intentional but dangerous to go in on the stretch with his studs up.

"I think when you see it like he [the referee, Chris Kavanagh] has, it was a clear red. The kid is just stretching but it ended up being an horrific challenge so was absolutely deserving for a red card."

Eddie Nketiah's red card proved costly for Arsenal as Jamie Vardy's late goal salvaged a 1-1 draw for Leicester City in the Premier League.

Mikel Arteta's side looked set to make it four league wins on the spin on Tuesday, thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's 21st-minute goal.

Yet, just four minutes after coming on, substitute Nketiah received his marching orders for a rash tackle on James Justin – referee Chris Kavanagh consulting VAR to deem the youngster's tackle worthy of a straight red.

And Leicester made their numerical advantage count with six minutes remaining – Vardy's goal standing after a long VAR check for offside as the Foxes claimed a valuable point.

 

 

Manchester United and Leicester City bolstered their top-four hopes with Premier League wins on Saturday – as Mason Greenwood announced himself as a major star and Jamie Vardy reached a long-awaited landmark

Third-placed Leicester have laboured since England's top flight resumed last month, collecting two points from three matches heading into the home game against Crystal Palace.

Kelechi Iheanacho's close-range finish from Youri Tielemans' low 49th-minute cross set the Foxes on course for a 3-0 win and a costly slip by Mamadou Sakho allowed Harvey Barnes to tee up Vardy for his 100th Premier League goal.

The former England striker then streamed clear in stoppage time to dink past Vicente Guaita and Brendan Rodgers' side remain three points ahead of United, who are up to fourth – at least temporarily – after dismantling Bournemouth 5-2.

The relegation-threatened visitors hit the front at Old Trafford through Junior Stanislas, who cheekily nutmegged Harry Maguire before beating David De Gea at his near post.

But teenage forward Greenwood then took centre stage, blasting into the top corner to equalise.

He finished with similar venom after half-time, the 18-year-old's 15th in all competitions this term making it 4-2 after Marcus Rashford converted from the penalty spot and Anthony Martial spectacularly found the top corner.

Another penalty by Joshua King - Eric Bailly the handball offender as Adam Smith was before him – briefly gave Bournemouth hope early in the second half, although that had dissipated by the time Bruno Fernandes crashed in a 59th-minute free-kick from the edge of the area.

Wolves and Chelsea must now offer their response, with the Blues knowing a win over Watford in Saturday's late kick-off will put them back above United.

Nuno Espirito Santos' Wolves face Arsenal before that in a crunch clash at Molineux, where three points would pull them level with the Red Devils.

Watford head to Stamford Bridge in 17th and a point better off than second-bottom Bournemouth, although the relegation picture became grimly clearer for Norwich City.

Brighton and Hove Albion's Leandro Trossard scored the only goal at Carrow Road, moving the Seagulls nine points clear of the drop zone and leaving Norwich seven from safety with five matches to play.

Jamie Vardy scored his 100th Premier League goal as he netted against Crystal Palace on Saturday.

The Leicester City striker brought up the landmark on his 205th appearance in the division, putting the Champions League-chasing Foxes 2-0 to the good.

Few of the former England international's ton have been so straightforward, as Harvey Barnes capitalised upon a slip from Palace defender Mamadou Sakho to leave Vardy with a simple finish.

It makes him the 29th player to reach a century of goals in the Premier League and the 16th to do so for a single club. 

Vardy now has 20 this season, making the 33-year-old the leading scorer in England's top flight.

His achievement is made all the more remarkable by the fact that Vardy was still playing non-League football at the age of 25.

Brendan Rodgers defended Jamie Vardy's form and said his focus was on Leicester City as a whole amid their goalscoring struggles.

Since returning to action earlier this month, Leicester have scored just one goal in three games, having bowed out in the FA Cup quarter-finals with a 1-0 loss to Chelsea on Sunday.

Vardy is without a goal in those three games, but has scored 19 times in 33 matches this season, to go with six assists.

Asked about the forward's form, Rodgers backed Vardy and said he wanted more from his entire attack, not just the Englishman.

"There's lots of focus on Jamie, but this is not just about Jamie, this is the responsibility of the team and it's my responsibility to find ways in which we can find ways to increase our goalscoring," he told a news conference.

"It's the responsibility of everyone. I think if you look at his record in terms of his goals and what he has done up until this point, he hasn't needed a lot of action, he's a true finisher.

"He is not one of those players who is involved in the link-up, in the game. That's not his strength. His strength is in the box and running from deep in behind.

"Of course we want to get him more service, but we are looking at ways to develop and get our wingers back to being involved and scoring and creating goals, and of course our midfield players.

"A lot of spotlight [is] on Jamie, but it is not just the striker, it's the team's contribution. So that's something we need to improve."

Leicester City, who are third in the table, are away to Everton in the Premier League on Wednesday.

Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers is "pretty relaxed" over transfer rumours regarding Ben Chilwell and hailed Jamie Vardy's "phenomenal" story as he approaches a Premier League landmark. 

England left-back Chilwell has been the subject of reported interest from Chelsea and Manchester City.

The Foxes are said to be confident of keeping Chilwell at the King Power Stadium, though, with Leicester on course to qualify for the Champions League, while he still has four years to run on his contract.

Finding a replacement that represents value for money could also prove difficult, as was the case when Leicester sold Harry Maguire to Manchester United last August.

Rodgers, whose side return to Premier League action following the coronavirus-enforced break at Watford on Saturday, is confident Chilwell remains focused on helping Leicester achieve their goals.

"I'm sure you can imagine the answer,  there's no need to comment on it now," Rodgers said during a virtual news conference on a day where it was confirmed captain Wes Morgan, Christian Fuchs and Eldin Jakupovic had all signed one-year contract extensions.

"He's come back, Ben, he looks absolutely fantastic. He's been able to go away, reflect on his game, everything he's done, he's been exceptional. 

"We're pretty relaxed on it, it's a sequence the club is used to now, over these last number of years, but when you have a talented group of players, they're always going to make the headlines. 

"I'm pretty relaxed, he's a fantastic boy to work with, outstanding young player, very driven to help us achieve what we want to this year."

Rodgers was also asked about Vardy, who needs just one more goal to chalk up 100 in the Premier League.

The 33-year-old's rags to riches story has been well documented and Vardy did not make his Football League debut until the age of 25.

Having risen through the pyramid to join Leicester from Fleetwood Town in 2012, the striker has become a Premier League winner and earned 26 England caps since moving to the Foxes.

"His story is absolutely phenomenal. Into professional football at 25, I read somewhere his first competitive game at the top level was only a few years ago, at 27," Rodgers added. 

"It's absolutely remarkable and it shows you the talent the guy has and the spirit and drive the guy has. 

"No doubt he'll get to that, pretty much sure he'll go well beyond it. 

"It's a phenomenal story Jamie's, but he'll go beyond it. He's super fit, super fast, I think he'll enjoy every minute, he'll get back to the level he was very quickly."

The Premier League returned on Wednesday with a double-header between Aston Villa and Sheffield United, and Manchester City and Arsenal.

There were many who advocated not finishing the season, with Watford striker Troy Deeney last month saying he would not return to training due to fears for his family during the COVID-19 crisis.

Rodgers said any member of his squad would be supported should they decide they did not want to play.

"100 per cent [they would be supported] that has always been the case, that question has gone to each player," said Rodgers, who himself recovered from coronavirus during the league's suspension. 

"The players are full of confidence here for the work the club has done but of course if there was any doubt, my relationship has always been open with the people and the players, they wouldn't have to play, it's as simple as that."

The pause in the football calendar (except in Belarus, of course) gives players across Europe plenty of time to reflect on their efforts so far this season.

While some have a few things to work on when matches return, there are others for whom 2019-20 has been a showcase of the very best they have to offer.

In the latest piece in our series, we look at the best-performing forwards in the Bundesliga, LaLiga, Ligue 1, Premier League and Serie A.

Goals might be the most obvious (and fundamentally important) of metrics for these players, but the number of times the ball crosses that white line is not the only measure of their quality.

To that end, we have also examined seven other parameters: minutes-per-goal rate, shots on target, shooting accuracy, shot conversion rate, big chance conversion rate, dribbles completed and dribble success rate. And these are for those players to make at least 10 league appearances this season, to avoid any unfair imbalance in the results (we're looking at you, Florin Andone).

Without further ado, we present the most ruthless forwards elite-level football in Europe has to offer...

THE MOST RUTHLESS FORWARDS IN EUROPE'S TOP-FIVE LEAGUES 2019-20:

 

BUNDESLIGA:

Most goals scored: Robert Lewandowski (25)
Best minutes-per-goal rate (Min. five goals scored): Robert Lewandowski (81.7)
Most shots on target: Robert Lewandowski (55)
Best shooting accuracy (Min. 30 shots): Marcus Thuram (76.3 per cent)
Best shot conversion rate (Min. five goals scored): Paco Alcacer (35.7 per cent)
Best big chance conversion rate (Min. five big chances): Rouwen Hennings (71.4 per cent)
Most dribbles completed: Marcus Thuram (57)
Best dribbles success rate (Min. 10 completed): Lucas Alario (83.3 per cent)

LALIGA:

Most goals scored: Lionel Messi (19)
Best minutes-per-goal rate (Min. five goals scored): Lionel Messi (99.5)
Most shots on target: Lionel Messi (55)
Best shooting accuracy (Min. 30 shots): Lionel Messi (68.9 per cent)
Best shot conversion rate (Min. five goals scored): Lucas Perez (40.7 per cent)
Best big chance conversion rate (Min. five big chances): Charles (83.3 per cent)
Most dribbles completed: Lionel Messi (118)
Best dribbles success rate (Min. 10 completed): Pione Sisto (76.9 per cent)

LIGUE 1:

Most goals scored: Kylian Mbappe and Wissam Ben Yedder (18)
Best minutes-per-goal rate (Min. five goals scored): Kylian Mbappe (84.1)
Most shots on target: Kylian Mbappe (49)
Best shooting accuracy (Min. 30 shots): Kasper Dolberg (78.1 per cent)
Best shot conversion rate (Min. five goals scored): Mauro Icardi (37.5 per cent)
Best big chance conversion rate (Min. five big chances): Moussa Dembele (72.2 per cent)
Most dribbles completed: Neymar (90)
Best dribbles success rate (Min. 10 completed): Zaydou Youssouf (85.7 per cent)

PREMIER LEAGUE:

Most goals scored: Jamie Vardy (19)
Best minutes-per-goal rate (Min. five goals scored): Sergio Aguero (87.6)
Most shots on target: Mohamed Salah (43)
Best shooting accuracy (Min. 30 shots): Anthony Martial (68.2 per cent)
Best shot conversion rate (Min. five goals scored): Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (36.2 per cent)
Best big chance conversion rate (Min. five big chances): Harry Kane (70 per cent)
Most dribbles completed: Adama Traore (144)
Best dribbles success rate (Min. 10 completed): Billy Sharp (86.7 per cent)

SERIE A:

Most goals scored: Ciro Immobile (27)
Best minutes-per-goal rate (Min. five goals scored): Luis Muriel (70.2)
Most shots on target: Cristiano Ronaldo (53)
Best shooting accuracy (Min. 30 shots): Romelu Lukaku (65.5 per cent)
Best shot conversion rate (Min. five goals scored): Ante Rebic (42.9 per cent)
Best big chance conversion rate (Min. five big chances): Felipe Caicedo (85.7 per cent)
Most dribbles completed: Jeremie Boga (106)
Best dribbles success rate (Min. 10 completed): Sergio Floccari (72.2 per cent)

AND THE TOP EIGHT:

Most goals scored: Ciro Immobile (27)
Best minutes-per-goal rate (Min. five goals scored): Luis Muriel (70.2)
Most shots on target: Lionel Messi and Robert Lewandowski (55)
Best shooting accuracy (Min. 30 shots): Kasper Dolberg (78.1 per cent)
Best shot conversion rate (Min. five goals scored): Ante Rebic (42.9 per cent)
Best big chance conversion rate (Min. five big chances): Felipe Caicedo (85.7 per cent)
Most dribbles completed: Adama Traore (144)
Best dribbles success rate (Min. 10 completed): Billy Sharp (86.7 per cent)

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