Belfast Telegraph

Bravo for City as they prove to be spot on in quest for Cup glory

Leicester 1-1 Man City (Man City win 4-3 on penalties)

By Nick Mashiter

Claudio Bravo was Manchester City's penalty hero as they kept their hopes of a dream quadruple alive to beat Leicester and reach the Carabao Cup semi finals.

The goalkeeper saved Riyad Mahrez's spot-kick as Pep Guardiola's side won 4-3 on penalties following a 1-1 draw after extra time.

Jamie Vardy missed in the shoot-out after scoring an added-time penalty to take it beyond 90 minutes, after Bernado Silva's first-half goal looked to have given the visitors the win.

They can still take a clean sweep of trophies this term with Guardiola's side 11 points clear at the top of the Premier League.

Leicester boss Claude Puel conceded before the game even if City made wholesale changes their team would still be one of the best in Europe.

Yet Puel's decision to leave Mahrez, Vardy and Demarai Gray on the bench until the second half ultimately backfired.

Only Ilkay Gundogan and Eliaquim Mangala started for City following Saturday's 4-1 win over Tottenham.

City, who have won the trophy twice in the last four years, bossed a low-tempo start which began to ignite when Silva forced Ben Hamer into a smart 13th-minute stop.

Gundogan, who scored his first goal of the season against Tottenham, was seeking more and Hamer tipped his chip over.

The Foxes started slowly and Kelechi Iheanacho, who moved from the Etihad to Leicester for £25million in the summer, struggled to make an impact before he helped his old club to a 26th-minute opener.

Iheanacho allowed Yaya Toure to take the ball, Gundogan strode forward to find Silva and the winger prodded the ball under the onrushing Hamer.

With the lead City were comfortable but Bravo had to react well to Iheanacho's low shot after 33 minutes.

It gave Leicester belief with Bravo unsettled and Iheanacho shot over following the goalkeeper's hurried clearance.

The hosts continued to rattle City thanks to the arrival of Mahrez and Vardy 11 minutes after the break but failed to create clear openings.

The arrival of Gray signalled Leicester's intent and they equalised in the seventh of eight minutes of stoppage time when Kyle Walker tangled with Gray in the area and Vardy buried the penalty. It was a soft decision and Walker had penalty claims of his own turned down in extra time.

Fuchs, Harry Maguire and Vicente Iborra scored for Leicester while Gundogan, Toure, Lukas Nmecha and Gabriel Jesus netted for City.

But, at 4-3, Vardy's penalty hit the post and Bravo dived to his left to deny Mahrez.

LEICESTER: Hamer, Amartey, Dragovic, Maguire, Fuchs, Albrighton (Mahrez, 57), King, Iborra, Chilwell (Gray, 71), Okazaki, Iheanacho (Vardy, 57).

Subs not used: Simpson, Jakupovic, Ulloa, Benalouane

MAN CITY: Bravo, Danilo, Adarabioyo, Mangala (Walker, 81), Zinchenko, Gundogan, Toure, Foden (Dele-Bashiru, 90), Bernardo Silva, Jesus, Diaz (Nmecha, 88)

Subs not used: Delph, Sane, Ederson, Duhaney

Man of the match: Claudio Bravo

Match rating: 7/10

Referee: Robert Madley

Belfast Telegraph

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