Leicester were of course the favorites in this match and especially at home seen as the clear candidate to get a good result and to secure everything away at Villa Park in the 2nd leg, but Aston Villa are in this semi-final because they deserve it and they fought to the very end.
Leicester had 64% possession which should have led to a win, but as we all know it was Aston Villa who took the lead after 28 minutes and showed great desire to keep their lead and defend with everything they got.
Leicester struggled in the first half to really get those chances to score with a parked bus in the Aston Villa penalty area, and with a 3-5-2 formation, it was a bit of a gamble from Brendan Rodgers to get that goal as fast as possible, instead he exposed himself in defense and Villa scored that fatal goal.
To play with Preat, Tielemans and Maddison in a trio in that center of midfield was also a risk and not to see Choudhury from start when Ndidi was missing made this a strange midfield trio as they were probably a bit too offensive.
With Leicester being 0-1 down after first half, Rodgers decided to make that change of Choudhury coming in and Dennis Preat leaving the field. A bit unfair to Praet who again is being “used” as the team needs adjustments for 2nd half.
Choudhury’s presence makes the midfield more dynamic and it gives more space for Maddison to go forward and really help the front line, but as often a number of attempts are not really materializing in goals, but of course great attempts.
Leicester are really hammering on, but the wall of Villa is difficult to break down and Rodgers again has to call for Kelechi Iheanacho who again is placed on the bench, with Vardy making the cut after a short period out with injuries, and he delivers with a fantastic finish just minutes after entering the field. Leicester are even with that 1-1 goal from Kelechi.
A run of great pressure towards the end makes no difference and also Marc Albrighton is brought on to try to win the battle at King Power. 1-1 was probably a result no one is satisfied with, but the play and the possession shows that Leicester is a much better team than Aston Villa.
But again everything is even in front of that second and most important game at Villa Park coming up later in the month. This is a new game and we hopefully have Wilfred Ndidi back for that one, he is very important, and hopefully Rodgers will be able to pick the right team and combination.
- Fantastic possession
- Able to fight back and gain a draw
- Kelechi scoring again, great to see him battling on
- Not really picking a well balanced team
- Playing with three in the back, a bit risky against a counter attacking team
- Choudhury and Iheanacho left on the bench again
- Changing formation and trolling a bit too much
- Not able to take the lead early on
- Chilwell, should be delivering much better
- Player Ratings: Schmeichel 6. Pereira 7, Soyuncu 7, Evans 6, Fuchs 6, Chilwell 4, Praet 5, Tielemans 5, Maddison 6, Perez 6, Vardy 6 Subs: Choudhury 7, Iheanacho, Albrighton
- Possession: 68 / 32
- Corners: 11 / 0
- Shots on target: 8 / 1
- Fouls: 16 / 13
- Offsides: 1 / 2