Leicester rallies for 2-1 win at Brighton, into second in Premier League

Brighton & Hove Albion vs Leicester City: A header from Daniel Amartey at an 87th-minute corner completed Leicester’s comeback after Kelechi Iheanacho began the recovery with an equalizer in the 62nd.

Kelechi Iheanacho

Leicester City's Kelechi Iheanacho scores the side's first goal.   -  Pool via Reuters

Leicester ignited its push for Champions League qualification by coming from behind to beat relegation-threatened Brighton 2-1 and climb into second place in the Premier League on Saturday.

A header from Daniel Amartey at an 87th-minute corner completed Leicester’s comeback after Kelechi Iheanacho began the recovery with an equalizer in the 62nd.

Adam Lallana’s well-worked goal in the 10th minute put Brighton ahead at Amex Stadium.

Leicester moved above Manchester United and has a seven-point buffer to fifth-place Everton in the race to finish in the top four. The team hasn’t played in the Champions League since the 2016-17 campaign, missing out last season after a late collapse.

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Injuries sustained by Harvey Barnes, James Maddison, James Justin and Jonny Evans over the past month have hit Leicester hard but it is showing resolve, coming from behind to draw at Burnley in midweek after also falling behind early. Before that, Leicester had lost 3-1 at home to Arsenal.

With United playing Manchester City in the derby on Sunday, there’s a decent chance Leicester will be staying in second place at least until next week.

Amartey made amends after being at fault for the opener when he sloppily conceded possession from a throw-in deep in Leicester territory. After being slipped in by Neal Maupay, Lallana coolly slotted past Kasper Schmeichel to claim his first Premier League goal since earning former club Liverpool a 1-1 draw at Manchester United in October 2019.

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The goal would have been welcome relief for Brighton manager Graham Potter, who had seen his struggling side register 66 shots in its last three games but score only once and collect just a solitary point to leave the club perilously placed three points above the relegation zone in 16th place.

Leicester improved after the restart and equalized after Lallana gave away possession in Brighton’s half. Youri Tielemans’ clever pass caught out Brighton captain Lewis Dunk, and the unmarked Iheanacho, who scored the late winner when the clubs met in the fifth round of the FA Cup a month ago, confidently lifted the ball over Robert Sanchez and into the top-right corner.

The winner arrived when Sanchez flapped at Marc Albrighton’s corner from the left, allowing the stooping Amartey a simple close-range finish.

Leicester is 12 points behind Manchester City, which has a game in hand.

OTHER RESULTS

1. Burnley 1-1 Arsenal

2. Sheffield United 0-2 Southampton

3. Aston Villa 0-0 Wolves

4. Brighton & Hove Albion 1-2 Leicester City.