LEICESTER, England (AP) — Leicester failed to climb out of the English Premier League’s relegation zone after a 1-1 draw at home to West Bromwich Albion extended the team’s winless run to six matches on Monday.
Riyad Mahrez salvaged a point for Leicester with an 80th-minute equalizer at King Power Stadium, but it was another ponderous display by the hosts, who could be set for another season of struggle after their improbable title-winning campaign of 2015-16.
Last season, Leicester was defending the title and plunged to within a point of the relegation zone before firing Claudio Ranieri, the manager who masterminded the unlikely charge to the Premier League trophy. They ended up pulling clear of trouble under Ranieri’s replacement, Craig Shakespeare.
Now, Leicester has dropped into the bottom three, two points from safety and on just six from eight games, though it has had a tough schedule.
Mahrez’s goal was his first of the season and a reminder of his class that won him English soccer’s player of the season award in 2016. The Algeria winger chested down a header from international teammate Islam Slimani and drove home an angled shot through West Brom defender Jonny Evans’ legs.
Leicester’s only win came against Brighton in the second round.
West Brom went ahead in the 63rd minute of a lackluster game when Nacer Chadli curled a free kick around the defensive wall and inside the post, with goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel wrong-footed. West Brom is also winless in six matches.
“I don’t think it’ll win any points for being a classic,” Schmeichel said of the final game of the eighth round.