Result: Last-ditch Leicester City equaliser frustates Manchester United

Result: Last-ditch Leicester City equaliser frustates Manchester United

BY SAMSON MBII/SOURCES,24TH DEC 2017-Harry Maguire scored a stoppage-time equaliser for Leicester City to restrict Manchester United to a 2-2 draw at the King Power Stadium this evening.

Jamie Vardy gave Leicester a 27th-minute lead before Juan Mata replied with a goal either side of half time.

The Spaniard had previously only scored once all season, but came to the party in style with two inch-perfect finishes to set United up for a third straight league win.

However, Leicester did not give up, even after substitute Daniel Amartey was sent off for two yellow cards, and Maguire rescued them a point with the last kick of the game.

Kasper Schmeichel kept United at bay early on with good saves from long-range Jesse Lingard and Paul Pogba sighters.

United were caught out by a classic Leicester sucker-punch for the opening goal as Riyad Mahrez teed up Vardy for his 50th Premier League goal.

Chris Smalling was isolated one-on-one with Mahrez from a long punt forward, and the Algerian waited for the run of Vardy who finished confidently into the bottom corner.

The Red Devils equalised five minutes before the break as Mata picked out the bottom corner with a controlled finish from Lingard’s layoff.

Leicester had a great opportunity to restore their lead on 44 minutes when Maguire beat the offside trap to get on the end of Marc Albrighton‘s set piece, but the defender tried to bring the ball down and his touch escaped him.

Another good Leicester chance after the interval fell to a defender as Christian Fuchs lined up a shot from 15 yards following good work from Mahrez on the right, only for Victor Lindelof to make a crucial block in front of David de Gea.

United went straight up the other end and missed a golden opening of their home as Anthony Martial shot over the crossbar from Romelu Lukaku‘s through-ball.

Martial was lively all game and played a role in United’s second by winning a free kick from which Mata squeezed a 20-yard shot underneath the crossbar, out of reach of Schmeichel despite it being fairly central.

The visitors should have killed the game off through either Lingard or Marcus Rashford, who both rounded Schmeichel when through one-on-one, only for the former to strike the post when faced with an open goal, and the latter to stumble to the floor under the Dane’s fair challenge.

Leicester’s comeback task was made harder by Amartey, on his first Premier League appearance since the opening weekend, picking up two bookings for cynical tackles within 17 minutes of replacing Danny Simpson.

The stage was set for the dramatic conclusion when Smalling picked up an injury in the final few minutes, and was forced to carry on with Jose Mourinho having made all three of his substitutions.

From Albrighton’s inviting 94th-minute delivery, Maguire got a run on the limping England international at the back post and finished side-footed across De Gea to send Leicester fans wild with Christmas cheer.

A point apiece leaves United 13 behind league leaders Manchester City, and Leicester consolidated in eighth.

LEICESTER (4-2-3-1): Schmeichel; Simpson (Amartey, 56′), Morgan, Maguire, Fuchs; Iborra (Okazaki, 67′), Ndidi; Albrighton, Mahrez, Gray (Chilwell, 80′), Vardy

MAN UNITED (4-2-3-1): De Gea; Lindelof, Smalling, Jones, Young; Matic, Pogba; Martial (Rashford, 71′), Lingard (Herrera, 76′), Mata (Mkhitaryan, 83′), Lukaku

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