Derby day ends in deadlock
East Midlands rivals Leicester City and Nottingham Forest face an FA third round replay after grinding out a 0-0 draw this afternoon at the City Ground.
Lewis McGugan and Andy Reid both had efforts on goal well-saved by Foxes keeper Kasper Schmeichel before David Nugent’s header struck the crossbar.
Lee Camp prevented Matt Mills and David Nugent from breaking the deadlock in the second half, while Lloyd Dyer blazed over the crossbar from six yards.
It was a scrappy derby encounter, and one which failed to deliver in terms of action despite having the hallmarks of a pulsating match – although Leicester will certainly take encouragement from their second-half performance.
Leicester suffered an injury blow in the opening few minutes when Jeff Schlupp had to be carried off on a stretcher following a strong challenge from Jonathan Greening, which Foxes manager Nigel Pearson later confirmed could be a long-term injury.
The hosts looked to capitalise on Leicester’s lapse in concentration and almost went ahead through Lewis McGugan, but his low strike was excellently saved by Kasper Schmeichel, with Matt Mills doing well to block Andy Reid’s follow-up effort.
Schmeichel was then quick off his line to stop Andy Reid’s close range shot after he had broken past Aleksandar Tunchev in the Leicester defence.
As the Foxes began to settle into the match, they began to offer more of a threat in attack, with David Nugent striking the woodwork from Paul Gallagher’s free-kick.
Lee Camp was then called upon to make an excellent save when Kieron Freeman’s disastrous header backwards had to be tipped wide by the Forest shot stopper.
David Nugent then caught Luke Chambers napping with his weak header back to Camp, but his lobbed effort over the goalkeeper landed just wide of the post.
After the break, Leicester were the stronger side and should have gone ahead when Yuki Abe’s through ball to Paul Gallagher left the winger one-on-one with Lee Camp, but his shot was poorly struck and flew over the crossbar.
Gallagher then fired inches wide and into the Forest side netting from 25 yards out with Camp well beaten at his near post, before Matt Mills’ powerful header was directed straight at the goalkeeper.
As the minutes passed, it looked as if a replay was inevitable, but Leicester wasted another great chance when some neat work from Jermaine Beckford down the left wing resulted in a great pass to Lloyd Dyer in the box, but as the ball fell back to Beckford, his shot again flew over the bar.
The best chance of the match fell to the visitors with less than ten minutes remaining when the excellent Neil Danns picked out David Nugent with a fantastic cross into the box, his header forcing a stunning diving save from Lee Camp, and Lloyd Dyer inexplicably fired the follow-up shot from six yards straight over the bar, much to the frustration of the Leicester fans behind the goal.
Beckford’s snapshot wide with two minutes remaining was the final real chance to break the deadlock, and after three minutes of stoppage time, the final whistle indicated that the two sides would meet again at the King Power Stadium in just over a week’s time.
Man of the Match – Neil Danns