In a tense game at the City Ground, FA Cup holders Leicester City were knocked out in the fourth round by East Midlands rivals Nottingham Forest. Forest, who are now in ninth place in the Championship, took the lead after Keinan Davis headed down Brennan Johnson’s cross and Philip Zinckernagel poked the ball past Danny Ward.
Within 30 seconds, the hosts had increased their lead, with Johnson scoring following a poor backpass from James Justin. Returning captain Joe Worrall blasted in a header at the back post from James Garner’s corner to make it 3-0.
Leicester was given a lifeline when home goalkeeper Brice Samba made a mistake, allowing Kelechi Iheanacho to slip the ball into an open net, but they were unable to respond.
Djed Spence ran through and slotted the ball past Ward to restore Forest’s three-goal lead and set up a fifth-round home tie against fellow Championship side Huddersfield Town.
It was only in May when Youri Tielemans struck a magnificent 25-yard goal to help Leicester win the FA Cup for the first time in club history, defeating Chelsea 1-0 at Wembley. However, Brendan Rodgers’ team fell flat on their faces at this stage, as Leicester followed Arsenal out of the cup when the Gunners lost 1-0 to Forest in the third round.
FA Cup defense falls apart
It was only in May when Youri Tielemans scored a stunning 25-yard goal as Leicester beat Chelsea 1-0 at Wembley as the Foxes won the FA Cup for the first time in their history. But Brendan Rodgers’ side tamely fell at this hurdle as Leicester followed Arsenal out of the competition after the Gunners had lost 1-0 at Forest in the third round.
Forest, on the other hand, was outstanding in front of a crowd of 28,762. For the second time in 17 years, they advanced to the fifth round, but the margin of victory against a team ranked 10th in the Premier League did not impress them.
It could have been a different game if Iheanacho had scored in the first five minutes, but he missed the target. Forest then took control of the game during a wild five-minute run midway through the half, with vociferous encouragement from their fans.
It was the first time the two sides had met in nearly eight years, although it was difficult to determine which team was in the higher division. Before Zinckernagel’s opener, Davis displayed excellent technique by volleying against the Leicester bar, and the visitor’s gifted Forest a second goal only moments later.
Worrall scored Forest’s third goal in the 32nd minute, concluding a magnificent nine-minute stretch that put the game beyond Leicester. Worrall had been out for three games due to broken ribs last month.
Leicester scored a 40th-minute goal thanks to Samba’s blunder as he ran out of his box to challenge Iheanacho, and the Foxes started the second half well, with James Maddison and replacement Patson Daka both missing chances.
Spence, however, put the game out of reach in the 61st minute, running through and scoring Forest’s fourth goal. It came after more dreadful defending, which Rodgers will rue as his side’s cup defense came to a halt.