Boro slip to defeat
King Power Stadium
Sat 25th Jan 3.00pm
Middlesbrough couldn't check the progress of the leaders as they slipped to a 2-0 defeat at Leicester City.
Jamie Vardy gave the hosts an early second-half advantage and Ritchie De Laet headed another after Boro's on loan goalkeeper Shay Given had saved David Nugent's penalty.
Lukas Jutkiewicz might have done better from an early opportunity but home goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel gathered easily.
Foxes defender Liam Moore then collided with a post and had to be replaced while Emmanuel Ledesma saw a shot charged down for the visitors.
Difficult conditions weren't helping the action, although Jutkiewicz had an early second-half header saved from Josef Varga's cross.
The angle then proved too tight after Wes Morgan lifted over in reply, until Nugent stole in as Daniel Ayala tried to run possession out and Vardy finished from close-range. However, Boro believed the ball had already gone out of play.
Leicester should really have added to that when Rhys Williams brought down Vardy but Given saved Nugent's 71st minute penalty to his right.
But just moments later Ayala was penalised and Matty James' free-kick presented an unopposed header for De Laet to increase their lead.
Keeper Given then thwarted debutant substitute Riyad Mahrez in the final minute with a fine save from his low shot.
Leicester City: Schmeichel, de Laet, Konchesky, Drinkwater, Morgan, Moore (Wasilewski 9), Knockaert, James, Vardy (Phillips 78), Nugent, Dyer (Mahrez 79)
subs (unused): Hammond, King, Taylor-Fletcher, Logan
Goals: Vardy (52), de Laet (73)
Middlesbrough: Given, Varga. R. Williams, Ayala, Friend, Leadbitter, Whitehead, Adomah, Ledesma (Chalobah 77), Jutkiewicz (Kamara 59), Carayol
subs (unused): Butterfield, Emnes, Gibson, Omeruo, Konstantopoulos
Ref: S. Martin