Europa League

Rennes 2-1 Leicester City (Agg 2-3): Player ratings as Foxes sneak through to ECL quarter-finals

Krishan Davis
Leicester are in the quarter-finals
Leicester are in the quarter-finals / DAMIEN MEYER/GettyImages
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Leicester survived a late onslaught from Rennes to progress to the Europa Conference League quarter-finals, despite defeat in northern France on Thursday night.

The visitors creaked under Rennes' early pressure and conceded inside ten minutes at a raucous Raozhon Park. Winger Martin Terrier's dangerous low cross was turned in by the man on the opposite flank, Benjamin Bourigeaud, as the aggregate deficit was halved early on.

Leicester had a presentable opportunity to equalise after a quarter of an hour, but Harvey Barnes' effort was denied by an excellent smothering block from centre-back Nayef Aguerd after he was slipped in by Kelechi Iheanacho.

The Foxes should have restored their two-goal aggregate cushion just four minutes into the second half, but Daniel Amartey headed straight at the goalkeeper when he rose unmarked to meet a corner at the back post.

However, Leicester didn't have to wait long to draw level on the night. From the resulting corner, the returning Wesley Fofana guided a perfect header inside the far post via a kiss off the woodwork.

The tie seemed to be petering out, but out of absolutely nothing, Rennes wove together a neat passing move and it was finished off by substitute Flavien Tait, whose low strike deflected in off Amartey.

That inevitably provoked a late onslaught from the hosts, roared on by the partisan crowd. Their golden chance to level the tie arrived with five minutes to go at the end of another intricate move, but Kasper Schmeichel produced an incredible point-blank save to deny Serhou Guirassy's first-time effort.

Baptiste Santamaria spurned another opening for Rennes when he dragged his shot wide in stoppage time, and Leicester survived a dramatic handball shout from the last kick of the game in the 97th minute. The ball did appear to strike Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall's arm, but the absence of VAR saved the Foxes.

Here's how the Leicester players rated as they squeezed through to the Europa Conference League quarter-finals...


LEICESTER CITY PLAYER RATINGS

1. Goalkeeper & defenders

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James Justin goes after the ball / DAMIEN MEYER/GettyImages

Kasper Schmeichel (GK) - 7/10 - Didn't have much chance with the goal. Unbelievable late save to deny an aggregate equaliser.

James Justin (RB) - 5/10 - Strange positioning for the opener, giving Terrier far too much room to cross. Rennes had a lot of joy down his flank after the break.

Daniel Amartey (CB) - 6/10 - Missed a sitter early in the second half for a man of his aerial ability. Plenty of clearances and recoveries.

Wesley Fofana (CB) - 7/10 - First game back from a long injury layoff. One of a few defenders who afforded Bourigeaud too much space. Perfect header to equalise - dream return.

Luke Thomas (LB) - 5/10 - A bit sloppy with his passing and looked slightly overawed with the situation. Some important clearances late on.

2. Midfielders

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Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall was on the end of some...robust tackles / DAMIEN MEYER/GettyImages

Wilfred Ndidi (DM) - 6/10 - Passed well and was successful in all his duels, but he was forced off on the hour mark after winning a crunching 50/50.

Youri Tielemans (CM) - 5/10 - Looked a little sluggish. Uncharacteristically loose with his passing and didn't offer much defensively. Lost most of his duels.

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall (CM) - 7/10 - His ball-carrying ability came in very handy to relieve some first-half pressure. Brilliant energy.

3. Forwards

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Harvey Barnes had a gilt-edged chance to score / DAMIEN MEYER/GettyImages

Marc Albrighton (RW) - N/A - Forced off early on with an injury.

Kelechi Iheanacho (ST) - 6/10 - Produced some very good hold-up play and often acted as more of a playmaker. Put in a shift.

Harvey Barnes (LW) - 6/10 - Denied an equaliser by a brilliant block. Forced into some important defensive work.

4. Substitutes

Ademola Lookman (RW) - 6/10 - On early for the stricken Albrighton. Perfect corner delivery to assist Fofana. Later subbed himself.

James Maddison (AM) - 6/10 - Kept the ball well and relieved some pressure with his guile.

Jannik Vestergaard (CB) - 7/10 - Excellent, making some huge defensive interventions.

Ricardo Pereira (RW) - 5/10 - Shored things up, but the defending was often desperate.


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