Iwobi Saves Point For Everton In Draw With Relegation Rivals Leicester
In a thrilling 2-2 draw against relegation rivals Leicester, Alex Iwobi saved a point for Everton.
Jordan Pickford made a critical penalty save, and the forward profited by stopping James Maddison from making it 3-1 just before halftime.
Prior to Caglar Soyuncu’s goal, Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s penalty kick—his first since October—opened the scoring.
After Jamie Vardy gave Leicester the lead, Maddison missed the opportunity to give the home team the lead, and Iwobi quickly drew things back even.
To compound their issues, Everton also lost their captain Seamus Coleman to a critical injury.
A point was really not much of a help to either team’s immediate chances of remaining in the Premier League, though it did move Leicester up one spot on goal differential. With four games remaining, Everton is still in last place, one point from being in the clear.
Seven years have passed since the Foxes’ Premier League victory on May 2, 2016. Leicester beat a nonchalant Everton 3-1 five days later, completing their fairy tale by winning the championship.
At an electrifying King Power Stadium, Andrea Bocelli had already performed a moving rendition of Nessun Dorma, and the Toffees had presented the hosts with a guard of honor.
In the future, the class of 2023 faced a new opponent following two fifth-place finishes, an FA Cup victory, a Champions League quarterfinal, and a Europa Conference League semifinal.
Everton have lost their previous six games while defending a top-flight position dating back to 1954.
The Toffees are staring into the abyss as the influence of Sean Dyche, who gained two victories from his first three games, has diminished. If there were any jitters, the visitors managed to keep them under wraps, and only Daniel Iversen’s outstanding save prevented Iwobi from scoring after Abdoulaye Doucoure’s incisive run.
In a rare Leicester attack, Maddison’s unimpressive shot was stopped by Pickford before the Toffees took a deserving lead in the 15th minute. However, Timothy Castagne’s moment of insanity caused him to unnecessarily push Calvert-Lewin over in the box, so it was a gift from the hosts.
In a season marred by injuries, the striker scored just his second goal by maintaining his composure from the penalty spot.
Dean Smith, the manager of Leicester, had criticized the calendar, which calls for the Foxes to play four Monday night games starting with their matchup against Everton. However, losses for Leeds and Nottingham Forest had given them the chance to move up, and they were on the verge of doing so when they unexpectedly tied the score after 22 minutes.
Soyuncu scored his first goal for the Foxes since October 2021 after Wout Faes nodded back Harvey Barnes’ cross after Maddison’s free-kick was only partially cleared. Leicester established their rhythm and took the lead after 33 minutes, which altered the course of the game.
Even though the Foxes had found theirs, Everton had lost all poise, and Youri Tielemans intercepted Iwobi’s bad ball so that Maddison could find Vardy.
In order to get around Pickford and score, the striker sprinted past Michael Keane. He hasn’t scored in consecutive games in almost a year. It caused a chaotic end to the first half, and the only thing that kept the hosts ahead was Iversen’s excellent save on Dwight McNeil.
When Calvert-Lewin was only able to shoot McNeil’s ball at Iversen from two yards away, Leicester pulled through once more. Soyuncu’s touch on the cross prevented the striker from converting a straightforward tap-in.
Leicester promptly made a break, and Vardy duped Keane before chipping the ball from eight yards onto the crossbar. The Toffees subsequently lost their captain as Coleman was taken out with a major injury following Boubakary Soumare’s forceful but harmless challenge.
When Barnes crossed the ball into the box and Keane handled it, it almost got worse, but Pickford got up to block Maddison’s poor penalty shot. The goalkeeper’s water bottle had instructions for Maddison’s penalty technique that read, “Stay.” Everton seized the opportunity as they equalized nine minutes after the restart.
After Faes touched on McNeil’s delivery and Iwobi had already drilled in, Iversen was helpless to stop him. He had already saved Calvert-Lewin.
After the game was tied, James Tarkowski stopped Vardy’s header that was headed for the net. Then, in a frantic finish, Iversen turned Doucoure’s drive wide to maintain a score neither side wanted.