Leicester City 4:3 Fulham
City are the only Championship side left in the League Cup after defeating Fulham in a 4-3 thriller at the KPS on Tuesday night…
Nigel Pearson made five changes to his side bringing in Miquel, Hammond, James, Schlupp and Wood.
After a cagey start to the game, with City trying to close down Fulham’s passing game.
But the Premier League side took an 18 minute lead following a slick move that saw Riise in down the left and finding Rodallega at the far post who netted from inches out despite City’s loud appeals for offside.
It was a tough task for City now but they pressed on. Wood forced a save from Cottagers’ keeper Stekelenburg and Knockaert also tested him with a shot, before Konchesky fired a shot over the bar.
City’s efforts were finally rewarded four minutes before the break. After Boatang brought down Hammond for a cautionable offence, Knockaert fired in a 25 yarder that Stekelenburg could only parry straight to Morgan who was left with the simple task of nodding the ball past him to level the game.
Four minutes later, to the delight of the home crowd, Fulham gifted City another goal. Senderos hit a poor clearance against the back of Konchesky and it fell perfectly for Wood to find the net from the edge of the six yard area six yards out to give City a half time lead that had looked highly unlikely five minutes earlier.
Dyer replaced Konchesky after the break and fired narrowly wide right from the kick off in what proved to be a lively start to the second half.
In the 50th minute Miquel rose above the visitor’s defence to nod Drinkwater’s cross home and give City a two goal cushion.
However, this was instantly reduced back to a single goal as City appeared to be caught napping and Rodallega headed his second from a teasing Karagounis cross.
Martin Jol introduced Ruiz and Bent to the action, but City were still looking the better side. A series of chances failed to produce a goal to kill off Fulham: Wood’s hooked shot over his own shoulder just failed to catch Stekelenburg out, Dyer and then James had shots blocked, and Schlupp missed the target when well placed.
At the other end Schmeichel pulled off a fine save to deny Ruiz.
As the clock ticked on it looked as though City were almost there when Wasilewski brought down Ruiz right on the 18 yard line. Karagounis arrowed it into the top right hand corner and a hugely disappointed crowd prepared themselves for extra-time.
It wasn’t required however. Straight after Fulham’s equaliser Pearson then brought on Vardy and Nugent for Knockaert and Wood – and both were involved in City’s winner.
A fine pass down the right from Vardy set Nugent up for a perfect cross which Dyer raced in to convert from 12 yards.
The roof nearly lifted off the KPS and, despite 6 minutes of time added on, City made it through to the quarter-finals for the first time since 2000.
Nigel Pearson summed up: “I don’t like conceding three goals but I really enjoy scoring four,” said the manager at final whistle. The most important thing tonight was going through to the next round. We thought we had a chance, and that proved to be the case.”
Leicester: Schmeichel, Konchesky (Dyer 46), Drinkwater, Morgan, Hammond, James, Schlupp, Miquel, Knockaert, Wasilewski, Wood. Subs Not Used: Vardy, King, Moore, Taylor-Fletcher, Logan, Nugent.
Fulham: Stekelenburg, Riise, Senderos, Kacaniklic, Karagounis, Duff (Ruiz 56), Hughes, Taarabt, Rodallega (Bent 64), Zverotic, Boatang (Sidwell 81). Subs Not Used: Stockdale, Dejagah, David, Amorebieta.
Referee: Keith Stroud. Attendance: 17,937.
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