Vardy rescues draw for leaders Leicester at Hull

Vardy has scored eight goals in his past eight appearances

Jamie Vardy restored Leicester City’s three-point lead at the top of the championship by scoring both of the Foxes’ goals in a battling draw at Hull.

The 37-year-old former England international’s 14th and 15th goals of the campaign helped Leicester twice come from a goal down in a tense match against their fellow promotion hopefuls.

Hull’s Fabio Carvalho had an early penalty saved by Leicester goalkeeper Mads Hermansen, but quickly made amends by punishing the Foxes for some sloppy play to put the hosts ahead with a cool finish.

A clumsy challenge from Jean Seri on Abdul Fatawu then allowed Vardy to equalise from the penalty spot before the break.

And after Anass Zaroury restored Hull’s lead with a fierce low second-half finish, Vardy hit back immediately with a goal that salvaged a crucial point to protect Leicester’s lead at the summit.

The hard-fought draw came in Leicester’s first game since it was revealed they are subject of an ongoing English Football League inquiry into a possible breach of profitability and sustainability rules (PSR).

Foxes boss Enzo Maresca spoke about the financial probe before the the trip to Hull, saying it has not made an immediate return to the Premier League any more urgent.

Leeds’ win against Sheffield Wednesday on Friday night had cut the gap at the top to two points, but Vardy’s double ensured the faltering Foxes avoided a fourth defeat in five league games.

The point was not enough to keep Hull in the play-off spots, with Norwich moving above them into sixth place by thrashing Rotherham 5-0.

On-loan Liverpool striker Carvalho had the chance to give the Tigers the ideal start from the penalty spot after Stephy Mavididi brought down Regan Slater in the area, but Hermansen guessed the right way to foil the Portuguese forward.

But after Yunus Akgun fired wastefully over at the other end – to the visible frustration of Vardy, who was well placed to link up with the Turkey international – Carvalho pounced on a mistake from Wout Faes on the edge of the Foxes’ box before smashing a low finish past the onrushing Hermansen.

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall crashed an effort off the post as Leicester searched for a first-half response, which eventually came from talismanic striker Vardy.

He slammed his penalty beyond diving Tigers goalkeeper Ryan Allsop and later made it eight goals in his past eight games with a cool finish in the area to cancel out Zaroury’s fine 20-yard effort for Hull.

Vardy was replaced by Patson Daka late on, and the Zambia striker scuffed Leicester’s best chance of winning it wide.

Hull City head coach Liam Rosenior told BBC Radio Humberside:

“For 99% of the game we were outstanding and I was so proud of how we played today against an outstanding team.

“We dominated the game in our way. We were brave, we played out and invited them to press. We played through their press, pressed them man-to-man, scored from it and stopped them getting their rhythm.

“For us to do that against an outstanding team gives me a lot of hope for the future. But at the same time, as proud as I am of the players and their bravery and their mentality, I’m just so disappointed we didn’t win the game and get our just rewards.”

Leicester City boss Enzo Maresca told BBC Radio Leicester:

“We expected a very tough game, they are a very good team. We played for some moments in the way we want to play, but it was not easy because they were man-to-man which was difficult.

When Maresca was asked about referee Samuel Barrott and the penalty that Hull were awarded:“Don’t ask me about the referees, please. Because to be honest I’m tired. It’s happened many times this season.

“Yeah [I spoke to the referee], just to clarify something, but it was after the game was already finished.

“At the end they always try to give some explanation, but sometimes that is no explanation because the penalty for them is outside the box and the second penalty is clear.”

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