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The BBC's John Murray
"Leicester felt Sutton had fouled Gilchrist"
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Martin O'Neill
"Players are coming here to do a hard job and we're being vilified for it"
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Gianluca Vialli
"It was a battle"
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Sunday, 30 January, 2000, 18:10 GMT
Weah takes Blues into last eight

Airborne: Poyet slams the first goal for Chelsea

Chelsea 2-1 Leicester

Chelsea marched into the quarter-finals of the FA Cup with a comfortable home victory over Leicester.

Former World Footballer of the Year George Weah was the star of the show, making the first goal for Gustavo Poyet before adding a glorious second himself.

Match facts
35: Poyet's athletic strike puts Chelsea ahead
48: Weah doubles the lead with a controversial goal
60: Walsh is sent off after an elbowing incident
90: Wise exits after a second bookable offence
90: Elliott hits a consolation
With 94 minutes on the clock, Matt Elliott produced a piece of outrageous skill to score for Leicester - butit was too late to alter the result.

Gianluca Vialli's team now face a last-eight showdown with giantkilling Gillingham at Stamford Bridge.

Leicester, whose cup heroics this season have earned them a reputation as one of the hardest teams to beat in the land, battled throughout - but they rarely troubled a self-assured Chelsea side.

And once Steve Walsh had been sent off for elbowing Chris Sutton in the face in the 60th minute, the Foxes' fate was sealed.

It was a decision by the referee which changed the game. We don't need to give Chelsea big decisions, they are a splendid, excellent side, make no mistake about that
Martin O'Neill on the second goal
Chelsea skipper Dennis Wise was also dismissed in injury time - in farcical fashion.

With the Blues playing out time, the midfielder, who had already been booked, absent-mindedly stuck his hand out as the ball flew past and received a second yellow card.

Poyet pounces

Inspired by the livewire Weah, Chelsea began to dominate mid-way through the first half and Sutton stroked a shot just wide from a 25-yard free-kick.

Sutton congratulates Weah on his stunning second
Weah was causing problems on Leicester's right flank and he stole the ball on the byline before crossing for Poyet, who slammed a header against the bar.

Leicester struggled to create much of note, but Walsh did send a first-time shot just wide after Marcel Desailly lost the ball to Robbie Savage on the edge of the area.

Chelsea went ahead from a 35th minute corner after Wise and Sutton both had shots blocked during a frantic passage of play in the Leicester area.

Wise holds off former Chelsea team-mate Sinclair
Wise's cross from the right looked to be heading out of play - but Weah produced another piece of skill on the byline to flick the ball back with his head into the path of Poyet, who athletically hooked it into the back of the net.

Weah doubled the lead right after the break with a stunning strike.

But there was a huge slice of controversy about the goal, as Sutton appeared to grapple Phil Gilchrist to the ground in the build-up. The referee waved play on, though, and Sutton slipped the ball to Weah. The Liberian was not in an obvious goalscoring position - but he somehow lashed a brilliant first-time shot past Foxes keeper Pegguy Arphexad and into the far corner.

With a third of the game to go, Leicester's fate was effectively sealed as they were reduced to 10 men.

Chelsea's Harley hooks the ball past Impey
As the players jostled in the visitors area at a free-kick, Walsh felled Sutton with his elbow.

The referee missed the incident but, with the Chelsea players fuming, his assistant alerted him to the offence and the red card was shown.

As Chelsea pushed on in search of a third, John Terry hit the post with a header and Dan Petrescu was denied by a sharp Arphexad save.

I'm happy the fans adore me and I hope that the future will be good for me. I love it in England already
George Weah
Then came a bizarre injury-time climax that was totally out of context with the rest of a run-of-the-mill cup tie.

First Wise was sent off then, with Chelsea cruising, Elliott skipped through the home area, beat the defence with a neat flick and stroked the ball into the back of the net.

Leicester desperately pressed for an unlikely equaliser - but the final whistle arrived just in time to the relief of Chelsea.


Chelsea: De Goey, Lambourde, Desailly, Hogh, Harley, Petrescu, Deschamps, Wise, Poyet, Weah, Sutton. Subs: Flo, Zola, Terry, Morris, Cudicini.

Leicester: Arphexad, Walsh, Taggart, Gilchrist, Sinclair, Zagorakis, Savage, Eadie, Impey, Elliott, Heskey.
Subs: Flowers, Gunnlaugsson, Campbell, Fenton, Stewart.

Referee: G Poll (Tring)

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See also:
19 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
Gunners out in penalty thriller
19 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
Blues eventually make it count
30 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
Glamour tie for Gills
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Bolton hold their nerve
30 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
Carbone magic kills off Leeds
27 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
FA Cup final rescheduled
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Hunt caps Charlton comeback
29 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
Owls' misery continues
29 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
Toffees made to battle
29 Jan 00 |  FA Cup
Tranmere on target for Wembley double
Links to other FA Cup stories are at the foot of the page.