February 23, 2013
Wood miss costs Foxes
Chris Wood missed a second-half penalty as Leicester's automatic promotion hopes were dented in Paul Ince's first home game in charge of Blackpool which ended 0-0.
Prolific New Zealander Wood has struck 19 goals this season but number 20 proved elusive on the north-west coast as Leicester were left to rue missed chances.
Debutant Harry Kane won a penalty for his new side early in the second period but Wood lashed the spot-kick against the crossbar before somehow missing the target from close range later on.
The pitch at Bloomfield Road was hardly conducive to crisp passing and it was no surprise that when a chance eventually did materialise in the first period, it came via a route one attack.
Kane, on loan with the Foxes from Tottenham, watched a long ball get flicked on by David Nugent before he unleashed a venomous volley which Matt Gilks did well to beat away down to his left.
Ben Marshall then saw his corner cleared straight back to him and he disturbed the side-netting with a left-footed try.
Blackpool, who began life under Ince with a 2-0 defeat at Leeds on Tuesday, were suddenly motivated into action and Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel was forced into a fine double save.
The former Leeds shot-stopper had to careful judge Tom Ince's effort from long distance as it threatened to bounce over him and he was alert enough to stop Neal Eardley from the follow-up too.
Schmeichel started the second period as he had ended the first by getting down to push winger Ince's testing drive wide.
Then, almost out of nothing, the visitors earned a spot-kick five minutes into the second half when Kane was knocked over unnecessarily by Eardley.
Wood stepped up to take the penalty and opted for power, thumping the ball against the woodwork before it flew over the bar.
Visiting manager Nigel Pearson decided to change the attacking triumvirate of Kane, Wood and Nugent, replacing the latter with Lloyd Dyer and switching to a 4-4-2.
The switch gave the Foxes more width and Marshall whipped in a free-kick which Wes Morgan just glanced off target.
Moments later, Dyer gave Wood the ultimate chance to redeem himself.
Kane darted past Craig Cathcart on the right and his low cross came all the way through to Dyer at the far post. He had the presence of mind to find Wood, who once more went for power rather than placement as he smashed the ball wide from six yards.
At the other end Stephen Crainey curled a free-kick just wide but the best chances continued to be created by Leicester.
Wood saw a deft header tipped over the crossbar by Gilks before substitute Anthony Knockaert drilled wide.
And there was no way through the visitors, who will view this as two points dropped with promotion rivals Hull and Crystal Palace both falling to defeats on their travels.
|Chris Wood (pen miss 50')|
|1 Matthew Gilks||1 Kasper Schmeichel|
|3 Stephen Crainey||15 Michael Keane|
|42 Kirk Broadfoot||3 Paul Konchesky|
|15 Alex Baptiste||5 Wes Morgan|
|5 Neal Eardley||2 Ritchie De Laet|
|17 Chris Basham||10 Andy King|
|20 Craig Cathcart||4 Daniel Drinkwater|
|16 Barry Ferguson||7 Ben Marshall|
|7 Matthew Phillips||35 David Nugent|
|12 Gary Taylor-Fletcher||39 Chris Wood|
|11 Thomas Ince||37 Harry Kane|
|21 Mark Halstead||Conrad Logan 13|
|4 Reece Wabara||Zak Whitbread 6|
|31 Martinez Cervera Angel||Richard Wellens 19|
|10 Elliot Grandin||Lloyd Dyer 11|
|14 Ludovic Sylvestre||Paul Gallagher 17|
|38 Matt Derbyshire||Antony Knockaert 24|
|40 Nathan Delfouneso||Jamie Vardy 9|
|Nathan Delfouneso for Gary Taylor-Fletcher (72)||Lloyd Dyer for David Nugent (61)|
|Matt Derbyshire for Matthew Phillips (80)||Antony Knockaert for Ben Marshall (73)|
|Jamie Vardy for Harry Kane (79)|
|Craig Cathcart (53)||Andy King (55)|
|Matthew Phillips (77)|
|· Squads: Blackpool | Leicester City|