Leicester grab late winner at Brighton

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Daniel Amartey’s goal was his first this season

Daniel Amartey scored a late winner as Leicester City came from behind to beat Brighton and boost their bid for Champions League qualification.

The defender stooped low to head into an empty net after Brighton keeper Robert Sanchez failed to claim Marc Albrighton’s corner.

Kelechi Iheanacho began the fightback with his second goal in as many games.

He cancelled out Adam Lallana’s first Brighton goal, which ended a 503-day drought without scoring.

Victory lifted Leicester above Manchester United and into second place in the Premier League, while extending their unbeaten away run to 10 league games.

Brighton remain three points above the relegation zone in 16th.

Foxes stay in the hunt

Leicester were on course for a top-four finish last season before falling away after the postponement because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Talisman Jamie Vardy has scored only once in his past 11 league games, but Iheanacho is producing the goals to fill the void.

Having rescued a point at Burnley on Wednesday, Iheanacho latched on to Youri Tielemans’ exquisite no-look through ball to lift the ball over Sanchez for the equaliser.

Amartey was the beneficiary when Albrighton whipped in an excellent late corner and Sanchez was unable to free his arms and punch the ball clear in the melee of bodies.

Leicester have the best away record in the division, and with key playmaker James Maddison likely to return before the end of the season, their credentials are looking strong.

Seagulls flying close to danger

England midfielder Lallana arrived at Brighton last summer with the intention of securing regular football after playing a fringe roll in Liverpool’s title win.

Injuries have cost the 32-year-old a consistent run in the side, but this was his best performance for Brighton.

He latched on to Neal Maupay’s through ball to smash past Kasper Schmeichel from inside the area with aplomb.

Moments later, Lallana’s cushioned left-footed pass set up Maupay, who was marginally offside.

Lallana was playing with confidence and was denied a second goal by a smart save from Schmeichel with the scores level.

The Seagulls are in danger of being sucked into the bottom three but keeping Lallana fit may be their best route to another season in the top flight.

‘It feels sore’ – what they said

Brighton manager Graham Potter told BBC Sport: “It feels sore. Overall our performance – certainly the first half – was good. We were close to getting a second.

“In the second half, Leicester responded and we didn’t play as well. Still, we had some opportunities but it felt like a draw might have been the right result.

“There was no problem with the approach and intention of the team. We made a few too many errors against a team going for the Champions League. The goal at the end is a bit of a blow.

“Adam Lallana did some really nice touches, nice combinations. He helped the team, kept us going. He was a positive for us.”

Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers told BBC Sport: “Brighton were better than us in the first half – we were too slow and not aggressive enough. They deservedly went in front.

“They were excellent; they are a good side. You can see why they beat top teams.

“We had to look at things at half-time. We were outstanding in the second half. The players were brilliant.

“It was a change of mindset; we needed to be more aggressive. Once we did that we had more energy on the ball.”

Leicester continue to dominate – the stats

  • Leicester have faced Brighton more often in the Premier League without losing than they have against any other side (eight games – W6 D2).
  • Brighton have dropped 17 points from winning positions this season, their most in a single Premier League campaign. Only Southampton (18) have dropped more in 2020-21.
  • No side has won fewer home points in the Premier League than Brighton this season (10), while Leicester have won four more on the road than any other side this term (34).
  • Brighton scored with their only shot on target in the first half, while Leicester scored with both their shots on target in the second.

What’s next?

Brighton make the trip along the south coast to face Southampton on 14 March at 12:00 GMT, while Leicester host Sheffield United at 14:00. (BBC)

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