Premier League
HullHull City2LeicesterLeicester City1
By Chris BevanBBC Sport
Adama Diomande scores Hull's first goal against Leicester
Adama Diomande (number 20, left) was awarded Hull's opening goal, the first of the new Premier League season, although Abel Hernandez (right) also got a touch

Leicester's defence of their Premier League title began with a shock defeat at newly promoted Hull, who are managerless and relegation favourites.

Under caretaker boss Mike Phelan, Hull took the lead when Adama Diomande and Abel Hernandez combined acrobatically, with Diomande awarded the goal.

Riyad Mahrez replied from the penalty spot at the start of the second half after Demarai Gray had been fouled.

But Robert Snodgrass earned the Tigers victory after a cross was not cleared.

Danny Simpson's clearance from Ahmed Elmohamady's ball into the area only found Snodgrass on the edge of the box, and he drilled home.

It is the first time the reigning English champions have started the season with a defeat since 1989, when Arsenal lost at Manchester United.

What was wrong with Leicester?

Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri
Claudio Ranieri's Leicester side lost only three league games in 2015-16

The Foxes' title success was built on a solid defence and clinical finishing, but they managed neither at the KCOM Stadium.

With Robert Huth suspended, summer signing Luis Hernandez came into the Leicester back four, which looked vulnerable whenever Hull attacked down the flanks.

The defending champions also struggled up front, with Jamie Vardy missing their best chances - and they needed the help of referee Mike Dean for their equaliser.

Tom Huddlestone appeared to stand on Gray's heels outside the Hull area, but he fell into the box and Dean pointed to the spot.

Vardy, who scored 24 Premier League goals last season, miscued badly from two Musa pull-backs and had another follow-up effort blocked by Jake Livermore after Christian Fuchs' shot was saved.

But otherwise Leicester created little against a makeshift Hull defence that featured midfielder Livermore at centre-half alongside Curtis Davies.

Hull were smarter than Leicester admits Foxes boss Claudio Ranieri

Analysis: Foxes off-balance - Waddle

Jamie Vardy and Claudio Ranieri
Claudio Ranieri and Jamie Vardy spoke about Leicester's misfiring attack during the game

BBC Radio 5 live analyst Chris Waddle felt the balance of Claudio Ranieri's side was wrong, with Gray, Musa and Vardy often all in the same area of the pitch.

"Mahrez was great on the left but Gray kept cutting in from the left and the two strikers Musa and Vardy were almost holding hands with him.

"N'Golo Kante has been sold so Andy King was playing in front of their defence, but he did not look like he has the energy to play there.

"King likes to get forward - dropping off and getting the ball like Kante did is not his strength."

A dream start for unfancied Hull

Hull fans protest before kick-off
Hull fans protested against owner Assam Allam before kick-off

There was a distinct lack of a party atmosphere at the KCOM Stadium as the game started, with home fans protesting against current owner Assam Allam and a lot of empty seats as well as banners.

With no manager to replace Steve Bruce, no new signings since they were promoted via the play-offs and talk of a takeover, it was a far from ideal way for Hull to mark their return to the Premier League.

Phelan's wafer-thin squad was expected to be cannon fodder for the champions, but he had clearly prepared them well because they started solidly and soon began causing Leicester problems.

Their spectacular and slightly bizarre opening goal came from a well-worked corner routine that saw Davies nod on at the near post.

They looked lively down the flanks, especially the impressive Elmohamady down the right, and rarely looked in danger when Leicester attacked.

The Foxes only lost three out of 38 league games last season - to Arsenal twice and Liverpool - but while Hull's success was unexpected, it was also fully deserved for their organisation and endeavour.

Hull caretaker-boss Mike Phelan

Man of the match: Hull defender Curtis Davies

Hull defender Curtis Davies wins a header against Jamie Vardy
Not only did Davies set up his side's first goal, he marshalled their defence superbly, making more interceptions (eight) and clearances (15) than any other Tigers player

What next?

Leicester face Arsenal in their first home game of the new season next Saturday, the same day Hull travel to Swansea.

Line-ups

Hull

  • 16Jakupovic
  • 27El Mohamady
  • 14Livermore
  • 6DaviesBooked at 71mins
  • 3Robertson
  • 7Meyler
  • 8Huddlestone
  • 11ClucasBooked at 83mins
  • 10Snodgrass
  • 9Hernández
  • 20Diomande

Substitutes

  • 12Kuciak
  • 15Maloney
  • 28Tymon
  • 29Bowen
  • 32Luer
  • 36Olley
  • 37Clackstone

Leicester

  • 1Schmeichel
  • 17SimpsonBooked at 33minsSubstituted forUlloaat 83'minutes
  • 2Hernández
  • 5Morgan
  • 28FuchsBooked at 29mins
  • 26Mahrez
  • 10KingSubstituted forAmarteyat 68'minutes
  • 4Drinkwater
  • 22GraySubstituted forOkazakiat 68'minutes
  • 7Musa
  • 9Vardy

Substitutes

  • 3Chilwell
  • 11Albrighton
  • 13Amartey
  • 14Kapustka
  • 20Okazaki
  • 21Zieler
  • 23Ulloa
Referee:
Mike Dean
Attendance:
21,037

Match Stats

Home TeamHullAway TeamLeicester
Possession
Home50%
Away50%
Shots
Home14
Away18
Shots on Target
Home5
Away5
Corners
Home5
Away3
Fouls
Home8
Away17

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Hull City 2, Leicester City 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Hull City 2, Leicester City 1.

  3. Post update

    Attempt saved. Daniel Drinkwater (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Daniel Amartey.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Tom Huddlestone (Hull City).

  5. Post update

    Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  6. Post update

    Attempt missed. David Meyler (Hull City) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

  7. Post update

    Corner, Hull City. Conceded by Daniel Amartey.

  8. Post update

    Robert Snodgrass (Hull City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Ahmed Musa (Leicester City).

  10. Post update

    David Meyler (Hull City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Leonardo Ulloa (Leicester City).

  12. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Adama Diomande (Hull City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ahmed Elmohamady.

  13. Substitution

    Substitution, Leicester City. Leonardo Ulloa replaces Danny Simpson.

  14. Booking

    Sam Clucas (Hull City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  15. Post update

    Foul by Sam Clucas (Hull City).

  16. Post update

    Ahmed Musa (Leicester City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  17. Post update

    Attempt saved. Robert Snodgrass (Hull City) left footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the right is saved in the top right corner.

  18. Post update

    Robert Snodgrass (Hull City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  19. Post update

    Foul by Ahmed Musa (Leicester City).

  20. Post update

    Sam Clucas (Hull City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

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