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17:07 14th January 2012


Leicester City 1 (Dyer 15)
Reds 2 (Gray 12, 34)

If money talks then you'd have thought the Reds wouldn't have been able to get a word in edgeways at Leicester City - but Keith Hill's troops marched into the goldmine and came out with maximum points after a remarkable performance at the King Power Stadium. All the goals came in the first half with Andy Gray's double sandwiching Lloyd Dyer's deflected equaliser as the Reds upset the odds with this heroic display.

Some wonderful football was on show - budgets went out of the window as the 22 men crossed the white line and Keith Hill's Army battled like warriors to the death. It was an incredible affair and the Reds leapfrogged today's opponents in the table.

Dagnall, who was looking feisty and determined to impress his former boss, wormed his way in on three minutes but was crowded out by some desperate defending. For the hosts an early free-kick was bent beautifully around the wall by Gallagher but Steele got down low to his left with a strong hand on six minutes.

With 12 minutes gone the opener came as Miles Addison carved Leicester open like a knife through warm butter. Vaz Te springing down the left and prodding forward for Drinkwater's clever run, a pull-back to Gray was side-footed home by the striker - celebrating a return to the side with what was made to look like a simple finish.

It was a shame when the beautifully crafted opener was cancelled out a minute later with a deflected strike via route one football. In fairness to Lloyd Dyer he did well to control the long punt down-field and Steele was stranded as Dyer's effort took a mean deflection off Hassell's challenge.

A typically expectant Foxes crowd were demanding of their side as the travelling seven-hundred or so Tykes fans jumped and bellowed proudly for their Red army.

With 34 gone, it wasn't quite a carbon copy - but the Reds replicated their first goal with another quality one. McEveley sent Vaz Te down the left with arguably pass of the season and again the Portuguese attacker waited for the arrival of Drinkwater. A delightful dink into the area was nodded home by Gray from five yards. Two goals for Gray - set for a perfect hat-trick - and two assists for Drinkwater. Wonderful football.

Inside the first three minutes of the second half there wasn't one but two occasions where Vaz Te could have been in. The first created by the brilliant pass of McEveley and the second a poor back-pass by Mills. The forward was forced wide the first time and thwarted by Schmeichel the second. Surely the tempo would slow down as the game stretched from end to end.

Leicester were in desperate search of an equaliser and were driving forward at every opportunity on the back of a now vocal King Power Stadium. Gallagher's powerful free-kick was cleared and Danns scooped over from 20 yards.

David Flitcroft was unhappy when Vaz Te conceded a free-kick, and remonstrated to the Fourth Official as Gallagher wasted the resulting set-piece.

A right old scramble followed a Foxes set-piece and a Tunchev scuff ricocheted off Steele's upright. The heat was on.

The hosts were pouring forward and Hassell didn't do himself any favours with a poor clearance but Foster threw himself in front of Nugent's effort to deflect the strike wide.

Matty Done replaced the d├ębutante Dagnall - who had run himself into the ground for the cause - with half an hour remaining. Another Reds change came after Andy king blazed wide from a tight angle, Addison was replaced by Davies as Hill sured up the attack with what proved to be a masterstroke.

Out of nowhere on 69 minutes, Jay McEveley came flying down the centre and released Done but the little forward was denied by Schmeichel's smart save.

Some wild challenges were flying in and Mills got away with just a booking following a clumsy lunge on Perkins - much to the disgust of Hill and Flitcroft.

As the cry of 'Pearson, sort it out' blasted around the ground, Craig Davies almost curled around Schmeichel for a third but was smartly denied by the stopper.

Frustratingly, Ricardo Vaz Te was cautioned for simulation in the area, replays showed that there was contact and perhaps Ricardo was unlucky but could have pulled the trigger beforehand.

With just less than ten minutes to play, City fans poured out of the exits despite their side being nowhere near out of it.

The game was stretched beyond recognition. Basketball didn't even come close to this one. Ricardo Vaz Te should have made it safe but Schmeichel was unbeatable in the second half. The forward danced past the last man Mills after carrying the ball 40 yards and went one-on-one with the big 'keeper but was expertly denied.

Leicester piled forward - wave after wave of relentless pressure and, despite thousands having disappeared, the noise was still incredible yet, somehow, Hills troops still seemed the more likely to score. The final whistle brought jubilation to the travelling 762 diehards. What an effort. What a result.


Leicester City: Schmeichel, Peltier, Konchesky, Mills, Gallagher (Beckford 73), King, Dyer, Wellens, Danns, Tunchev, Nugent.
Subs: St. Ledger, Weale, Abe, Kennedy.

Reds: Steele, Hassell, McEveley, Foster, Perkins, McNulty, Addison (Davies 67), Vaz Te (Wiseman 90+2), Drinkwater, Gray, Dagnall (Done 61).
Subs: Preece, Edwards.

Referee: Dean Whitestone
Assistant Referees: Robert Ellis & Danny Gratton
Fourth Official: Antony Coggins

Attendance: 22,116 (762 from the Red Army)

    Data provided by Press Association


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.