Saturday 18 November 2017

Hughes blames referee after Leicester fightback

Stoke 2 Leicester 2

Stoke City manager Mark Hughes
Stoke City manager Mark Hughes

Britannia stadium

Mark Hughes was critical of both his players and the match officials after he saw his Stoke side let slip a two-goal lead.

The hosts raced ahead as the fit-again Bojan Krkic marked his first league start in eight months with a goal in the 13th minute, and Jonathan Walters then pounced on a Wes Morgan error to double the advantage seven minutes later.

But high-flying Leicester produced yet another stirring comeback to get a point, with Riyad Mahrez converting a penalty after Marko Arnautovic fouled Danny Drinkwater, before Jamie Vardy held off Erik Pieters to scuff in the leveller.

Hughes - whose side remain in the relegation zone, without a League win this season - protested that the penalty offence took place outside the box, and was angry that no action was taken by referee Andre Marriner in the build-up to the Vardy goal when Morgan tangled with Walters at the other end of the pitch.

"For the second goal, we maybe got a little bit distracted by, once again, the referee not really officiating as well as he should have done," he lamented.

While Stoke remained 18th, Leicester finished the game still in the lofty position of second as they preserved their unbeaten start to the season.

It was the fourth league match in a row they have salvaged something having gone behind - including a 3-2 win over Aston Villa last time out when they were also 2-0 down at the interval.

Foxes boss Claudio Ranieri said: "It was a great comeback, but it is not possible to do this every time. We started very well, but suddenly conceded and then made a mistake to concede the second.

"In the second half we reacted very well, but we have to concentrate more."

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