Iheanacho strikes propels Leicester in the finals

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Updated: 29/02/2024

2020-21 FA Cup semi-finals: Iheanacho goal takes Leicester into the finals – match report.

Leicester City 1 Southampton 0 – Sunday, 18 April 2021

A second half goal by Kelenechi Iheanacho in front of a Wembley crowd of 4000 spectators (the largest in attendance in 13 months in England) took Leicester City to their first FA Cup final in 52 years.

In an uneventful first half, Brendan Rodgers' Foxes created the better chances, the first of which came in the 34th minute when Youri Tielemans pounced on a midfielder error by Ibrahima Diallo to set Jamie Vardy free on goal.

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But Southampton goalkeeper Fraser Forster was alert to the danger as he came out to close the angle, causing Vardy to lift his shot over the crossbar. Leicester should have scored just before half time when Jonny Evans' header back across goal from a Tielemans corner was spectacularly cleared off the line by Jan Bednarek as the game went into the interval goalless.

The Saints were bereft of energy and intensity as they failed to land a single shot on target in the first 45 minutes with main striker Danny Ings cutting a frustrated figure.

There was some urgency though from Ralph Hasenhuttl's side post the break. James Ward-Prowse was seen taking a free kick from Kyle Walker-Peters and relaying it to the head of Jannik Vestergaard inside the area, but the defender's effort was off-target.

Leicester eventually found the goal they were looking for when Vardy broke free on the left, leaving Bednarek in his wake as he crossed to Iheanacho whose first effort was blocked by Fraser but the ball rebounded to the Nigerian who side-footed past the keeper to break the deadlock in the 55th minute.

James Maddison, coming in as substitute in the 69th minute, nearly extended the Foxes' lead when he took a Iheanacho pass inside the box but blasted over from close range even as another effort from the midfielder sailed over.

The Saints came closest to an equalizer in their timid display when a Diallo effort went narrowly off target. Other than that, there was nothing noteworthy of Southampton's performance that evening as they bowed out of the tournament.

Rodgers' men will now face Chelsea in the final on 15 May, their first appearance in the FA Cup finals since they lost 1-0 to Manchester City way back in 1969.

Leicester City starting XI: Schmeichel (goal), Fofana, Soyuncu, Evans, Ricardo Pereira, Ndidi, Tielemans, Castagne, Perez, Iheanacho, Vardy.

Subs: Maddison, Albrighton.

Southampton starting XI: Forster (goal), Walker-Peters, Bednarek, Vestergaard, Bertrand, Djenepo, Diallo, Ward-Prowse, Armstrong, Redmond, Ings.

Subs: Adams, Salisu, Tella, Walcott.

Man of the match: .

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