Kasper Schmeichel takes plaudits after a world-class display for Leicester City
Nigel Pearson hailed goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel after his world-class save against Blackburn helped Leicester City to a crucial win on Tuesday night.
Despite dominating the game, City could have gone behind when Morten Gamst Pedersen's speculative shot took a wicked deflection which looked destined for the back of the net – until Schmeichel somehow managed to change direction in mid-air and push the goal-bound shot over the bar.
Within minutes, Chris Wood put City in front and they went on to claim a comfortable 3-0 victory, courtesy of further strikes from Harry Kane and Andy King.
Pearson said Schmeichel's save was absolutely crucial to the outcome.
"It was a fantastic save at a key time," said the City boss.
"The first goal is always important in any game, so for him to make that save at that point was clearly important for us.
"He was going the wrong way but showed a lot of agility and reactions. It was a fantastic save.
"Kasper is having a very good season for us. Sometimes you notice goalkeepers when they make a string of saves but end up on the losing side. I would rather have a keeper who doesn't have a lot to do but, when he does have to do something, he does it well.
"He works exceptionally hard at his game. He has been a big part of our season so far. He is driven to be successful.
"It illustrates that you need a good team performance and team ethic to be successful. It was very pleasing to get back-to-back clean sheets."
Pearson said it would have been unjust for City to have gone behind at that point after taking such strong control over the game.
However, he was delighted with City's attacking display after Schmeichel's save.
"The last 25 minutes of the first half we played some really good, attacking football," he said.
"Both our wide men and full-backs produced some excellent goal-scoring opportunities and, with the strikers we have, we had aerial options. They are good players as well.
"It made for a performance which was pleasing on the eye. It would have been a bit unfair to go in level having dominated the first half.
"I am pleased for the players because they work really hard. It was a thoroughly professional performance."