Aston Villa will take a 1-1 draw back to Villa Park as Dean Smith’s side look to make use of the home advantage against Leicester City to set up a Carabao Cup final come March.
Frederic Guilbert got his second goal for Villa, and in the Carabao Cup as he opened the scoring before Kelechi Iheanacho levelled the first leg fifteen minutes from time.
Villa started the game with a low block and limited Leicester to few chances in a first half that Villa managed only two shots in. Although, it was an impressive tactical display from Smith who once more got the best out of his players using a three at the back formation.
With Villa’s first effort on goal, Guilbert made Ben Chilwell pay for some lapse defending at the far post as Anwar El Ghazi crossed into a dangerous area before the half-hour mark. The French right-back snuck inside the back post to convert from close range.
Villa acquitted themselves very well for the rest of the first half that almost saw Ezri Konsa double the away side’s lead before the break. Jack Grealish’s inch-perfect cross was met by Konsa who struck the bar with a powerful header.
Villa stood strong
The second half began as the first half ended, with Leicester in search of a home goal to swing the tie in their favour, but Villa stood strong. Tyrone Mings and Kortney Hause, in particular, were crucial to Villa’s excellent start, both competing with Jamie Vardy, and in aerial duels they were perfect.
Orjan Nyland was also on top form, claiming crosses and blocking shots at his near post throughout the second half, and it was, therefore, no shock that Douglas Luiz was shouted down for throwing away an important goal in a two-legged tie.
As Ezri Konsa played his free-kick short to Luiz, the Brazilian midfielder was dispossessed in the middle of the park by Hamza Choudhury, and substitute Iheanacho duly converted under pressure from Mings and Hause.
Villa will turn their attentions to the Premier League on Sunday as league champions Manchester City come to town.