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Saturday, 20 April, 2002, 15:51 GMT 16:51 UK
Plucky Foxes hold Villa
Villa players congratulate Hitzlsperger on his solo goal
Villa players congratulate Hitzlsperger on his solo goal
Leicester 2-2 Aston Villa
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They may already be relegated, but Leicester showed good fight in front of the Filbert Street faithful to salvage an entertaining draw against Aston Villa.

Goals from Darius Vassell and Thomas Hitzlsperger looked to have earned the visitors a win, but Muzzy Izzet and Jon Stevenson replied for the Foxes.

  Filbert Street incidents:
22: Crouch tees up Vassell for Villa opener
25: Izzet hits straight back from penalty spot
27: Hitzlsperger fires Villa ahead again
67: Jon Stevenson equalises for Leicester

With nothing much at stake for either side, spectators may have expected a dull game, but were treated to a feast of flowing football instead.

Villa had the ball in the net after only five minutes, when Tomas Hitzlsperger struck his shot against the post and Peter Crouch tucked in the rebound.

The 6ft 6in forward was ruled offside, but his team did not have to wait long for a goal.

Crouch was again involved, holding up the ball for what seemed like an eternity before feeding recalled strike partner Vassell.


Villa were the better team - we only got something from it because we kept going
Leicester boss
Micky Adams
The young England star served further notice of his World Cup potential by flashing an unstoppable shot past Ian Walker on 22 minutes.

The Leicester reply was immediate.

Lee Marshall was scythed down in the box. Up stepped Izzet, back from injury, to slot home.

As the exciting end-to-end football continued, Villa soon had their lead back courtesy of a solo run from young Hitzlsperger.

Matthew Piper could have sent the home side into half-time level but was cruelly denied by the cross bar.

After the break, Villa turned on the style, but could not make their possession tell.


We had enough chances to have won two games - we should have been 4-1 up at half-time
Villa manager
Graham Taylor
Keen to give their fans a proud Premiership send-off, Leicester drove forward and were rewarded with a goal from Stevenson, a product of the Filbert Street youth system.

His equaliser came on 67 minutes with equal measures of luck and determination, as he chased down his own first shot to slot home from the penalty spot.

Before the game, Villa supporters taunted their Leicester counterparts with chants of "We'll meet again, don't know where, don't know when."

The sides will not meet in league play next season, but on the evidence of this fighting display, Foxes fans have cause for some hope as they drop down to the Nationwide.


Leicester: Walker, Rowett, Elliott, Sinclair, Davidson (Heath 89), Izzet, Savage, Marshall (Ashton 51), Oakes (Stevenson 51), Dickov, Piper.
Subs Not Used: Price, Williamson.
Booked: Izzet.

Aston Villa: Enckelman, Delaney, Mellberg, Staunton, Samuel (Kachloul 79), Stone, Boateng, Hitzlsperger, Barry, Vassell (Balaban 80), Crouch.
Subs Not Used: Myhill, Angel, Hendrie.

Attendance: 18,125

Referee: G Poll (Tring).

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BBC Sport's Ron Jones
"It was end-to-end stuff full of goalmouth incident"
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