Foxes v Rams report
6th April 2007
Fagan opens his account for the Rams
The Rams automatic promotion push faltered at the Walkers Stadium where they let slip the lead and had to settle for a 1-1 draw with Leicester.
Craig Fagan netted his first goal for Derby to give the Rams a 1-0 half-time lead but Matty Fryatt scored a second half equaliser to earn the hosts a share of the spoils.
Billy Davies named an unchanged side from the 2-1 win at Barnsley, with Steve Howard still serving his two match ban. The Foxes made two changes to the side that lost 2-4 to Stoke with Stephen Hughes and Levi Porter replacing Shaun Newton and Andy Johnson.
The hosts pressed first, but Hughes' effort from the edge of the Rams box was sliced high and wide of Stephen Bywater's goal, but Leicester opened brightly.
The Rams settled and gradually began to win a more possession but they hadn`t fashioned a goal scoring opportunity. The Foxes had a penalty appeal waved away when Darren Moore brought down Patrick Kisnorbo as he raced to meet a Danny Tiatto cross from the left, but referee Webb wasn`t interested in their protests.
But the Rams broke on a quick counter-attack through Giles Barnes who found Fagan in the left channel from where the 24-year-old slotted past advancing goalkeeper Paul Henderson in the 23rd minute, to score his first goal for the Rams since his move from Hull City.
Moments later Barnes fired over on the turn from Darren Currie's cross from the left wing but Barnes needed treatment before the break after tumbling awkwardly in the Leicester penalty area.
Leicester again opened the second half the brighter, with Hume shooting inches over Bywater's crossbar in the 49th minute, and three minutes later, Tiatto's fired just wide after he robbed Matt Oakley on the edge of the penalty box. The Rams were struggling and the Foxes were pressing hard for the equaliser, and Hume was denied by an acrobatic Bywater save.
Fagan then tested Henderson but the keeper saved comfortably, and Jay McEveley picking out the unmarked Jones, but he glanced his header wide. And moments later Leicester were level as Matty Fryatt, on as a 56th-minute substitute for Elvis Hammond, received the ball from Jason Jarrett, and stroked a shot past Bywater.
The Rams should have earn the three points late on when Fagan fired straight at Hendeson from 10-yards, and at the other end Bywater saved a Porter shot to keep the Rams still clear at the top-of-the-table.
Leicester: Henderson, Stearman, Kenton, Kisnorbo, Maybury, Hughes (Yeates 65), Jarrett, Tiatto, Porter, Hume, Hammond (Fryatt 56).
Subs Not Used: Logan, Johansson, Horsfield.
Derby County: Bywater, Mears, Moore, Leacock, McEveley, Fagan, Oakley, Jones (Bisgaard 74), Currie (Lupoli 80), Barnes, Macken (Teale 59).
Subs Not Used: Grant, Edworthy.
Ref: H Webb (S Yorkshire).
Rams boss Billy Davies was happy with the point but believed his side should have taken three. He said: "I feel we have taken a giant step towards the points target I have in my mind for promotion.
"Overall, I am delighted with the point but I was angry in the dressing room after the game because I think we should have won the game.
"We stepped off the pace in the second half but although Leicester had lots of possession I did not think they carried a threat until they scored.
"We should have at least made sure the game petered out into a 1-0 win but even after Leicester equalised, Craig Fagan should have scored a second for us.'
Davies was also critical of the officials as he accused Tiatto of elbowing Giles Barnes off the ball.
He said: 'If I am correct in what I think I saw - and I am willing to be corrected - Tiatto gave Barnes a clear elbow in the face.
"The assistant referee should have intervened at that point but as it was, Tiatto was lucky to stay on the pitch.'
Leicester boss Rob Kelly was disappointed with a couple of peantly appeals were turned down, he said: "It was a definite penalty when Moore fouled Kisnorbo and I thought we just went to sleep and conceded immediately.
"When we get a disappointing decision, sometimes the players are so disappointed it takes them a little bit of time to get switched back on.
"After not getting the penalty, it took them a few seconds to get back into their slots and it was those few seconds which cost us.
"We are now on 47 points which I do not think is enough to say we are safe from the threat of relegation.
"But one more win will take us to that 50-point landmark and if we can reach that with four games of the season left to go, it will give us a platform on which to build for next season."