Belfast Telegraph

Craig Shakespeare hails 'Mahrez of old' after Leicester beat Hull

Leicester interim manager Craig Shakespeare hopes Riyad Mahrez's goal against Hull will signal his return to form.

The Algeria international, much like the Leicester team, has struggled to reproduce last season's form which saw him voted the PFA Player of the Year.

However, there was a glimpse of the magic that earned him that accolade on Saturday when he scored Leicester's second goal in their 3-1 victory over Premier League relegation rivals Hull.

Mahrez turned Andrew Robertson one way then the other trying to create an opening for a shot and, after cutting back for the third time, he found the bottom corner of the net with a shot from the edge of the area.

It was only the winger's eighth goal of the season and his first for the Foxes since November.

Shakespeare said: "Riyad Mahrez has been frustrated with himself. We told him to go out there and be himself. It is the Mahrez of old with the goal he scored.

"Goals give players confidence and hopefully now he can go on a run. Results give players confidence. Back-to-back wins will give confidence for the last 11 games of the season."

It was a huge win for the champions, who are now five points clear of the relegation zone.

Shakespeare added: "In terms of our points, it has been a turnaround. Everyone looked at the game against Liverpool on Monday and to get the three points under pressure was important but to back that up with another win was vitally important.

"When you're losing and down on confidence it can be hard. Am I surprised? No, because I know this squad and what they're capable of."

Hull, meanwhile, remain second bottom of the table and are four points from safety after Crystal Palace won at West Brom.

Tigers boss Marco Silva said: " Of course, these are not good numbers. We need to be strong and to fight, like we did today.

"But the most important thing is when we have a chance to score, we score. Goals are the most important thing in matches.

"Now is the moment to rest and analyse the game with the players and then we work towards the next game against Swansea."

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