The FA Cup - Fifth Round
Aston VillaAston Villa2LeicesterLeicester City1

Aston Villa 2-1 Leicester City

By Patrick JenningsBBC Sport
  • New Villa manager Tim Sherwood in stands
  • Villa transformed after Sherwood words at break
  • Leandro Bacuna scores 16th goal of Villa's season
  • Leicester create best openings of flat first half

New Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood watched from the stands as his side reached the FA Cup quarter-finals at the expense of Leicester City.

Leandro Bacuna's curled strike put Villa ahead after a flat first half, before Scott Sinclair scored late on to seemingly secure the victory.

The home side's nerve was tested after Andrej Kramaric grabbed one back for Leicester in injury-time.

But Villa held on to win the fifth-round tie.

Both clubs had endured a tumultuous week, with Leicester boss Nigel Pearson's position having been the subject of speculation, and Villa parting company with Paul Lambert before hiring Tim Sherwood as new manager on Saturday.

With former Tottenham boss Sherwood watching on from the directors' box, the home fans' reaction to his presence was muted. The 28,098 attendance was well short of Villa Park's 42,682 capacity, but there was a largely positive reaction to his appointment.

After Sherwood addressed his new side in the dressing room at the break, Villa responded positively.

In a flat opening half that reflected both sides' poor Premier League form, bottom club Leicester's Marcin Wasilewski clipped the post with a header from a Matty James corner, while 18th-placed Villa struggled to create clear openings.

A Villa 1 (Bacuna 68') Leicester 0

Striker Christian Benteke was back in the starting line-up, but Villa looked toothless in attack and Leicester again came close when Shay Given made an exceptional save from Matty James' fierce left-foot drive.

Benteke had the ball in the back of the net, only for his low strike to be correctly ruled out for offside, but Villa's more direct approach almost paid instant dividends in the second half.

The volume of the home crowd's support grew as Villa pressed for just their 16th goal of the season in all competitions. It was midfielder Bacuna who provided it, curling past Mark Schwarzer with his right foot from outside the box with just over 20 minutes to play.

Andreas Weimann had a goal ruled out for offside before Scott Sinclair's scuffed finished was fumbled into the net by Leicester goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer.

The Foxes' record signing Kramaric gave the away side hope of a replay with a powerful header late on but Villa held their nerve with a win that was deserved for their second-half showing alone.

Aston Villa caretaker manager Scott Marshall: "The game was great today, the boys produced a good performance. The most important thing was the energy and the togetherness was good.

"One or two will learn from [conceding late on] as well, but the determination was always there to see the game out."

Leicester City manager Nigel Pearson: "The first 15 minutes, I don't think we were very fluent with the ball but after that we did pretty well. In the second half, we just could not keep hold of the ball, it kept coming back at us.

"The reason we are having a frustrating season is because we don't reproduce performances. All but one player was in the side who started against Arsenal, which was a good performance, and for today we did not do well enough for long periods.

"We have to make sure our performances are more consistent. That is what is more annoying. Players, when they are in the side, have to make sure they produce performances that make it difficult to make changes."

Tim Sherwood
New Villa manager Sherwood was appointed on Saturday, following the sacking of Paul Lambert
Aston Villa
Aston Villa's performance improved markedly after new boss Tim Sherwood's half-time address
Shay Given
Shay Given's spectacular save kept Villa level at half-time
Ciaran Clark and Ron Vlaar challenge Andrej Kramaric
Leicester created the better openings in a flat first half
Leandro Bacuna
Leandro Bacuna's goal was Villa's 16th in all competitions

Line-ups

Aston Villa

  • 31Given
  • 21Hutton
  • 4Vlaar
  • 6Clark
  • 23Cissokho
  • 8Cleverley
  • 15Westwood
  • 16Delph
  • 7BacunaSubstituted forSinclairat 77'minutes
  • 20Benteke
  • 10WeimannSubstituted forGrealishat 83'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Guzan
  • 5Okore
  • 9Sinclair
  • 12Cole
  • 24C Sánchez
  • 34Lowton
  • 40Grealish

Leicester

  • 32Schwarzer
  • 17SimpsonBooked at 90mins
  • 27WasilewskiSubstituted forUlloaat 65'minutes
  • 5Morgan
  • 6Upson
  • 3KoncheskyBooked at 60mins
  • 26Mahrez
  • 8James
  • 19Cambiasso
  • 15Schlupp
  • 40Kramaric

Substitutes

  • 7Hammond
  • 9Vardy
  • 10King
  • 11Albrighton
  • 12Hamer
  • 18Moore
  • 23Ulloa
Referee:
Mark Clattenburg
Attendance:
28,098

Match Stats

Home TeamAston VillaAway TeamLeicester
Possession
Home52%
Away48%
Shots
Home17
Away10
Shots on Target
Home8
Away2
Corners
Home5
Away8
Fouls
Home7
Away4

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Aston Villa 2, Leicester City 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Aston Villa 2, Leicester City 1.

  3. Post update

    Attempt missed. Andrej Kramaric (Leicester City) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left.

  4. Post update

    Hand ball by Tom Cleverley (Aston Villa).

  5. Post update

    Attempt saved. Christian Benteke (Aston Villa) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Tom Cleverley.

  6. Booking

    Danny Simpson (Leicester City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  7. Post update

    Scott Sinclair (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  8. Post update

    Foul by Danny Simpson (Leicester City).

  9. Goal!

    Goal! Aston Villa 2, Leicester City 1. Andrej Kramaric (Leicester City) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Jeffrey Schlupp with a cross.

  10. Goal!

    Goal! Aston Villa 2, Leicester City 0. Scott Sinclair (Aston Villa) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Christian Benteke.

  11. Post update

    Attempt saved. Christian Benteke (Aston Villa) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Jack Grealish.

  12. Post update

    Offside, Leicester City. Matthew James tries a through ball, but Riyad Mahrez is caught offside.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Ashley Westwood (Aston Villa).

  14. Post update

    Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  15. Substitution

    Substitution, Aston Villa. Jack Grealish replaces Andreas Weimann.

  16. Post update

    Attempt missed. Esteban Cambiasso (Leicester City) left footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

  17. Post update

    Hand ball by Fabian Delph (Aston Villa).

  18. Substitution

    Substitution, Aston Villa. Scott Sinclair replaces Leandro Bacuna.

  19. Post update

    Attempt missed. Andrej Kramaric (Leicester City) header from the left side of the box is just a bit too high.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Ashley Westwood (Aston Villa).