Vardy penalty rescues point for ten-man Leicester at Brighton
Brighton & Hove Albion were held to a frustrating 1-1 draw at the Amex this afternoon by a Leicester side who played with ten men for an hour.
Glenn Murray headed Brighton into the lead on 15 minutes, before Leicester were reduced to ten men when James Maddison was shown two bookings in the space of three minutes just before the half-hour mark.
Despite being a man down, Leicester levelled 11 minutes from time when Jamie Vardy scored from the penalty spot after Beram Kayal fouled Kelechi Iheanacho.
Albion made four changes from their 2-1 defeat at Cardiff as Bruno, Bernardo, Davy Propper and Pascal Gross came in for Martin Montoya, Gaetan Bong, the suspended Dale Stephens and Solly March.
Striker Vardy was fit enough only for a place on the Leicester bench, while in-form attacking midfielder Maddison returned to the Foxes' starting line-up after a knee injury.
The visitors had early penalty appeals waved away when Shinji Okazaki went down in the area under a Bernardo challenge.
Albion went close on 12 minutes when Vicente Iborra lost possession just outside the Leicester penalty area and Pascal Gross played through Kayal, whose shot was pushed behind by Kasper Schmeichel.
From the resulting corner, Anthony Knockaert won a free kick on the edge of the penalty area but the Frenchman's shot and follow-up effort were both blocked.
Brighton soon went ahead, though, as Knockaert's inch-perfect corner was glanced home by Murray at the near post for the striker's seventh goal of the season.
Jose Izquierdo fired over an opportunity to make it 2-0 before the visitors were reduced to ten men just before the half-hour mark when Maddison was dismissed for two bookings in the space of three minutes by referee Chris Kavanagh.
Maddison firstly tripped Knockaert when Albion's winger looked to break forward and then went down theatrically in the penalty area under a Shane Duffy challenge and was shown a second yellow card for simulation.
In the final action of the first half, Okazaki sent a shot straight at Mathew Ryan.
Izquierdo cut in and sent a shot out for a throw-in at the start of the second period, before Leicester introduced Vardy after 55 minutes which lifted the visiting supporters.
Brighton defender Shane Duffy had an acrobatic overhead kick saved by Schmeichel from Izquierdo's cross, before the Irish international was booked for clattering Vardy just before the hour.
The Foxes began to look more threatening without creating any clear chances and made their final substitution with 20 minutes to go when Kelechi Iheanacho replaced Okazaki.
Izquierdo had another opening 14 minutes from time when he again cut in from the left but drove a shot wide of the far post.
The visitors drew level 11 minutes from time when Vardy sent Ryan the wrong way from the penalty spot after Kayal fouled Iheanacho.
Albion responded by sending on Florin Andone for Gross and Duffy glanced a Solly March cross wide, with Lewis Dunk lurking behind, six minutes from time.
Iheanacho fizzed a shot just wide as the ten-man Foxes pushed for a winner, before Kayal curled a 20-yarder wide at the other end.
Brighton piled on the pressure in injury-time but Leicester defended resolutely to return home with a point.
BRIGHTON: Ryan; Bruno, Duffy, Dunk, Bernardo; Knockaert (March 72), Propper, Kayal, Izquierdo; Gross; Murray (Locadia 90). Subs: Steele, Bong, Bissouma, Balogun.
LEICESTER: Schmeichel; Pereira, Morgan, Evans, Chilwell; Albrighton, Iborra (Ndidi 32), Mendy, Gray (Vardy 55); Maddison; Okazaki (Iheanacho 70). Subs: Ward, Simpson, Soyuncu, Fuchs.
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