Leicester City booked their place in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Wednesday night, with the Premier League champions beating Championship side Derby 3-1 after extra-time in a tight replay at the King Power Stadium.
After a poor first-half, the two under-strength sides upped the tempo, with Andy King scoring in the first minute of the second period, after Demarai Gray’s cross was headed back across goal by Marc Albrighton.
However, Steve McClaren’s Derby side got themselves back on level terms just after the hour-mark, with Abdoul Camara’s free-kick deflected past Ron-Robert Zieler by the unfortunate Ben Chilwell.
Neither manager would have wanted extra-time, however, while both sides pushed for a winner, the 90 minutes would end all square. Although the Rams were lucky not see goalkeeper Jonathan Mitchell sent off late on for handling the ball outside the box.
Then, soon after the first period of extra-time got underway, sub Wilfred Ndidi, a £15m summer-signing from Genk, produced a smashing strike from outside the box which arrowed in to the Derby net off the post.
The hosts should have gone 2-0 up soon after, only for Islam Slimani to somehow failed to make contact on a cross from Demarai Gray, from all off one yard out.
Slimani misses an open goal from one yard out, no wonder we went out in the group stages pic.twitter.com/wriglSCe5Z
— Dean Ammi (@whufcammi) February 8, 2017
However, late on, Gray would seal the deal for Leicester with a fine solo goal after a superb mazy dribble.
The win for Leicester now sees them face an away trip to League One side Millwall in the next round.
Foxes’ boss Claudio Ranieri will no doubt be hoping the hard-fought win will help to kickstart their dismal league campaign.
As for McClaren, the Derby boss can get back to focusing on his side’s push for promotion back to the top-flight.