Premier League
Stoke2Leicester2

Stoke City 2-2 Leicester City

Daniel Amartey
Daniel Amartey headed an 88th-minute equaliser for Leicester

Champions Leicester City recovered from Jamie Vardy's red card and a two-goal deficit to claim an incredible draw at Stoke City.

Vardy was contentiously dismissed by referee Craig Pawson for a two-footed tackle on Mame Diouf.

Stoke took advantage to score twice before half-time, with Bojan Krkic converting a penalty after Danny Simpson's handball, and Joe Allen tapping in.

But the Foxes mounted a remarkable comeback in the final 15 minutes, with substitute Leonardo Ulloa and Daniel Amartey heading home to snatch a point.

It leaves Leicester three points above the relegation zone in 15th, while Stoke are 11th.

Best and worst of the champions

Ulloa and Gray
These dots show Ulloa and Gray's first touches of the game - the cross and header for Leicester's first goal

A draw never looked likely from the moment Vardy was sent off in the 28th minute.

The England striker went in two-footed and off the ground on Diouf, but won the ball.

Pawson deemed it reckless, though, and showed Vardy his second red card of 2016.

Listen: Man Utd decision may have been in referee's mind for Vardy red - Nevin

Leicester fell apart immediately, as Simpson gave away the penalty by putting his hand in the air while sliding to block a cross, and Allen tapped in after Giannelli Imbula's shot came back off the post and hit the hapless Kasper Schmeichel on the back of the head.

The Foxes' discipline vanished - boss Claudio Ranieri had to be held back by his goalkeeper from remonstrating with Pawson at the break, and six of his players were booked in a 10-minute spell either side of half-time.

But the finale was incredible, with substitutes Demarai Gray and Ulloa combining with their first touches of the match to make it 2-1 - Gray crossing for Ulloa to head home a goal given by goalline technology despite Ryan Shawcross' effort to clear.

Stoke were pinned into their own half in the closing moments, and Christian Fuchs crossed from the right for Amartey to head in the equaliser.

A week to forget for Pawson?

Going by the rulebook, Pawson was within his rights to send off Vardy, as the tackle looked out of control, particularly in real time.

But his inconsistency will frustrate many, with Pawson only showing Manchester United's Marcos Rojo a yellow card for a similar challenge against Crystal Palace in midweek.

Indeed, perhaps the criticism for that decision was in his mind when he produced the red card for Vardy.

It means the spotlight will shine brighter on the rest of his decisions and, though Foxes fans made their thoughts on his performance clear, the penalty award was spot on and he had little choice with most of the eight bookings.

Ranieri and Stoke counterpart Mark Hughes had contrasting opinions on the red card.

Ranieri said: "One manager says yes, one says no. If you listen to me I say 'no', if you listen to Mark Hughes he says 'yes'."

Hughes said: "It was a two-footed challenge. The lad left the floor and I don't know what Leicester are complaining about. From my point of view it was clear."

'Rubbish' - Was it a red card?

Ex-Chelsea winger Pat Nevin on BBC Radio 5 live: "When he goes with his two feet - they were off the ground - he didn't seem to hurt Diouf but that didn't matter in the referee's eyes. I wouldn't have quibbled had they shown Vardy a yellow."

Former Leicester striker Dion Dublin on Final Score: "Rubbish. The referee has got that completely wrong. Vardy makes the tackle. He has no intention of making the tackle with two feet at all. It is 100% wrong."

Ex-Tottenham striker Garth Crooks on Final Score: "Craig Pawson has fundamentally misunderstood what has gone on. Vardy left the ground with two feet but he has done that in order to get to the ball.

"He won the ball and Diouf gets out of the way. Vardy makes no contact. He has been anything but reckless. Referees are making big decisions with the little teams because it seems to be easier."

Sloppy Stoke let it slip

Amid Leicester's heroics, there will be concern from Stoke boss Mark Hughes at how easily his team let three points escape from their grip.

With a one-man advantage and a two-goal lead, the Potters looked to be coasting toward a third win in five games.

They forced three good saves from Schmeichel, who put in an impressive performance on his return to the Leicester side after a broken hand.

But the hosts dropped deeper and deeper in the second half and, after some slick passing play in the first period, resorted to hitting hopeful balls into the channels.

It meant Leicester could keep coming back at them and ultimately Stoke, who had kept three clean sheets in their past four games, looked tired and flimsy at the back.

Man of the match - Bojan Krkic

Bojan
An impressive return to the side for Bojan after a month of being overlooked. He was Stoke's dangerman with clever passes and through balls

'It could be a turning point' - manager reaction

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Result should've been done and dusted - Hughes

Stoke City manager Mark Hughes said: "Leading 2-0 it was well deserved, we were good value for that lead and were in good shape. You have to get the job done and we didn't do that.

"You think it should be a straightforward second half, but we made it difficult and allowed them to get back into the game.

"We are in decent shape, but this game should have been won."

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Ranieri hails 'fantastic spirit' from Foxes

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri said: "It was a fantastic spirit and we wanted to fight until the end so it was important for us to play well.

"During half-time we spoke a lot and had to believe something good was possible. I am always positive.

"It could be a turning point today, but we have to wait and see the next matches.

"I was angry at the referee because I saw my players fight and there were so many yellow cards, but it was a normal battle in the Premier League."

Can we play here every week? - match facts

  • Stoke are yet to win a Premier League home game against Leicester (W0 D2 L1) - the only side they have faced more than once at home in the competition but not won against.
  • This was the 14th time Leicester had a player sent off in a Premier League game but avoided defeat, and the first time since they faced Manchester United in May.
  • Joe Allen has scored more Premier League goals in 2016-17 (five) than in his previous four seasons combined (four).
  • The Foxes have already conceded more away goals this season (21) than in all of 2015-16 (18).
  • Jamie Vardy is one of two players to be sent off twice in the Premier League in 2016 (also Victor Wanyama).

What's next?

There's a nine-day rest for Leicester as they host Everton on Boxing Day (26 December), while Stoke are in action a day later when they travel to Liverpool on Tuesday, 27 December.

Line-ups

Stoke

  • 33Grant
  • 8JohnsonBooked at 48mins
  • 17Shawcross
  • 15Martins IndiBooked at 67mins
  • 3Pieters
  • 21Imbula
  • 6WhelanSubstituted forSobhiat 90+2'minutes
  • 18Diouf
  • 4Allen
  • 27BojanSubstituted forAdamat 83'minutes
  • 19Walters

Substitutes

  • 12Bony
  • 16Adam
  • 22Shaqiri
  • 24Given
  • 25Crouch
  • 32Sobhi
  • 45Ngoy

Leicester

  • 1Schmeichel
  • 17SimpsonBooked at 38mins
  • 5Morgan
  • 6HuthBooked at 48mins
  • 28FuchsBooked at 45mins
  • 26MahrezSubstituted forMusaat 80'minutes
  • 10KingBooked at 43mins
  • 13Amartey
  • 11AlbrightonBooked at 45minsSubstituted forGrayat 72'minutes
  • 19SlimaniBooked at 43minsSubstituted forUlloaat 72'minutes
  • 9VardyBooked at 28mins

Substitutes

  • 3Chilwell
  • 7Musa
  • 20Okazaki
  • 21Zieler
  • 22Gray
  • 23Ulloa
  • 24Mendy
Referee:
Craig Pawson
Attendance:
27,663

Match Stats

Home TeamStokeAway TeamLeicester
Possession
Home65%
Away35%
Shots
Home16
Away14
Shots on Target
Home7
Away8
Corners
Home9
Away9
Fouls
Home9
Away12

Live Text

Match ends, Stoke City 2, Leicester City 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Stoke City 2, Leicester City 2.

Foul by Ryan Shawcross (Stoke City).

Robert Huth (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Stoke City. Ramadan Sobhi replaces Glenn Whelan.

Corner, Stoke City. Conceded by Kasper Schmeichel.

Attempt saved. Glenn Whelan (Stoke City) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Giannelli Imbula.

Attempt missed. Ahmed Musa (Leicester City) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

Goal!

Goal! Stoke City 2, Leicester City 2. Daniel Amartey (Leicester City) header from the centre of the box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Christian Fuchs with a cross.

Offside, Stoke City. Ryan Shawcross tries a through ball, but Jonathan Walters is caught offside.

Jonathan Walters (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Wes Morgan (Leicester City).

Substitution

Substitution, Stoke City. Charlie Adam replaces Bojan.

Foul by Erik Pieters (Stoke City).

Leonardo Ulloa (Leicester City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Ahmed Musa replaces Riyad Mahrez.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Ryan Shawcross.

Attempt blocked. Demarai Gray (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Christian Fuchs with a headed pass.

Goal!

Goal! Stoke City 2, Leicester City 1. Leonardo Ulloa (Leicester City) header from very close range to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Demarai Gray with a cross.

Attempt missed. Erik Pieters (Stoke City) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jonathan Walters.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Leonardo Ulloa replaces Islam Slimani.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Demarai Gray replaces Marc Albrighton.

Attempt saved. Joe Allen (Stoke City) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Glen Johnson.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Glenn Whelan.

Booking

Erik Pieters (Stoke City) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Bruno Martins Indi (Stoke City).

Danny Simpson (Leicester City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Corner, Stoke City. Conceded by Robert Huth.

Attempt blocked. Erik Pieters (Stoke City) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Mame Biram Diouf (Stoke City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Daniel Amartey (Leicester City).

Attempt blocked. Wes Morgan (Leicester City) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Marc Albrighton with a cross.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Mame Biram Diouf.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Erik Pieters.

Corner, Stoke City. Conceded by Kasper Schmeichel.

Attempt saved. Jonathan Walters (Stoke City) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Mame Biram Diouf with a cross.

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

Foul by Bruno Martins Indi (Stoke City).

Islam Slimani (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Erik Pieters (Stoke City).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Chelsea17141235112443
2Liverpool16104240202034
3Arsenal16104237172034
4Man City16103334191533
5Tottenham1686227111630
6Man Utd178632417730
7West Brom176562321223
8Everton166552120123
9Southampton165651415-121
10Bournemouth166372225-321
11Stoke175661924-521
12Watford176382129-821
13West Ham175481931-1219
14Middlesbrough174671619-318
15Leicester174582329-617
16Burnley165291526-1117
17Crystal Palace1743102832-415
18Sunderland1742111528-1314
19Swansea1733112037-1712
20Hull1733111436-2212
View full Premier League table

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