Leicester City made history as they enter the draw for the quarter finals of the champions league thanks to the heroics of Kasper Schmeichel and goals from Albrighton and Morgan. The Foxes continue their incredible journey with a dominant 2-0 victory at home against Spanish giants Sevilla.
Leicester City entered the biggest game in their history Tuesday evening knowing that conceding a goal would effectively kill off the tie. Craig Shakespeare picked a full strengthed side in their trademark 4-4-2 looking to beat Sevilla on the wings and in the air.
The reigning English champions started the game strongly, with the best of the early running, pinning back the Europa league holders in their final third whilst failing to really test Rico in the Sevilla goal. Despite the pressure being applied by the Foxes, it was the visitors who tested Schmeichel early with a powerful shot from Nasri low to the keepers left.
The early stages of the game set the tone for a full-blooded affair, both sides knowing what was it at stake. the Italian referee was allowing a lot more go than you would expect to see in a domestic British game which at first seemed to unsettle Leicester as they tried to get the measure of what the ref would allow.
Wes Morgan brought the King Power to its feet on 26 minutes as he knees the ball in at the back post to put Leicester in the lead on the night and levelled the tie. Vardy had won a free kick on the edge of the area after a foul from the Sevilla captain Iborra. Riyad Mahrez delivered a pinpoint perfect cross to the back post and Captain Morgan was on hand to tap in from close range.
The following ten minutes after the goal was a tense affair for Leicester with chances for Sevilla who looked calm in the face of elimination, safe in the knowledge that scoring one goal would put them back in control of the tie.
Sevilla made two changes at the break and started the brighter of the two sides and rattled the bar as Escudero is allowed too much space and took a shot from over 30 yards out. Leicester City doubled their advantage on 54 minutes as Mark Albrighton rifled in a shot from the edge of the area after Sevilla failed to clear a ball.
Jamie Vardy had the perfect chance to kill off the tie of 66 minutes as Rico makes a good block on a cross from Slimani, the England striker could only scuff his effort wide. As the second half ticked on, the tension was rising as Sevilla pushed forward looking for a goal, Leicester sat deeper and deeper leaving Vardy and Slimani high to break on the counter.
Schmeichel once again on 71 minutes came to Leicester’s rescue as he palmed away a fierce effort from close range by Corea. Samir Nasri senselessly but a dent in his team’s chances of winning as he received his marching orders moments later for a headbutt on Jamie Vardy that also saw the Foxes man carded.
On the 78th minute, the referee awarded Sevilla a lifeline as he awarded a penalty as Schmeichel brought down the onrushing Vitolo. Nzonzi’s penalty was poorly taken but brilliantly saved by the Great Dane reminiscent of his Father’s famous save in the FA Cup Semi-Final replay in 99.
There was no time to celebrate as Sevilla were again hammering against the Leicester defences, but they held firm. With just minutes remaining Sevilla’s manager Sampaoli was sent to the stands by the referee who had an excellent game.
Rico kept Sevilla in the game in the final stages time and again with a reaction save from a Vardy and a perfectly timed dive at the feet of Slimani to rob the onrushing forward. To the death Leicester continued to play their way, looking to keep it tight and pounce on the counter attack but Vardy’s composure failed him at the key moments as he ballooned his one on one chance high into the stands, but in the end it didn’t matter as Leicester held on for their most famous victory.