Dublin leads by example as Leicester sink Derby

Leicester City 1 - Derby County 0
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The Independent Football

Leicester City sealed their Championship status with victory over Derby County in this enjoyable East Midlands match last night. The defeat was not enough to severely dent the play-off aspirations of George Burley's men, more to raise questions as to whether they deserve a place back in the top flight.

Leicester City sealed their Championship status with victory over Derby County in this enjoyable East Midlands match last night. The defeat was not enough to severely dent the play-off aspirations of George Burley's men, more to raise questions as to whether they deserve a place back in the top flight.

Derby were left in no doubt as to who looked more potent in the early stages, a determined Leicester side coming close, first through striker David Connolly eight minutes in and then through veteran striker Dion Dublin, who tested Lee Camp's reflexes two minutes later with a trademark powerful header.

The visitors, unbeaten in four games, looked jaded and at times, uninterested, as industrious Leicester dominated. City certainly did not play like a side knowing that they would soon be faced with relegation if their form, just one league win since mid-January, did not drastically change.

It was Dublin who had urged his team-mates to "roll their sleeves up" earlier this week and the striker - veteran of a fair share of scraps in the past - must have been pleased by the graft and energy shown. On 33 minutes, he rolled back the years with a spectacular overhead kick, which sailed just wide.

Just five minutes into the second half, Leicester were rewarded as Tiatto's speculative high ball into the penalty area found the feet of Connolly, and with the Derby defence in disarray, he unleashed a forceful low shot between Camp's legs.

On 79 minutes, the Derby substitute Ian Taylor could not react fast enough to direct his header past the Leicester goalkeeper Ian Walker.

Dublin was continuing to be a menace in attack, and with the diminutive Connolly, was doing enough to keep Derby occupied.

With just a minute to go, Derby's Tommy Smith found himself through on goal after being put through by the substitute Paul Peschisolido, but Walker saved well one-handed as the visitors' best chance was wasted.

Leicester City (4-4-2): Walker; Maybury, Kenton, McCarthy, Stewart; Hughes (Gillespie, 85), Williams (Gudjonsson, 77), Nalis, Tiatto (Moore, 90); Dublin, Connolly. Substitutes not used: Heath, Stearman.

Derby County (4-3-3): Camp; Makin, Konjic (Junior, 86), Johnson, Kenna; Bolder (Taylor, 54), Bisgaard, Huddlestone; Reich, Smith, Rasiak (Peschisolido, h-t). Substitutes not used: Miller (gk), Mills.

Referee: A D'Urso (Essex).

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