Manchester City v Leicester City 1973/74

 leicester home 1973 to 74 prog


League Division 1

12th January 1974

attendance 27,488

scorers Law(38), Marsh(65)

Ref K Styles

 City  MacRae, Barrett, Donachie, Doyle, Booth, Towers, Summerbee, Bell, Lee, Law, Marsh – sub Leman(72)

Leicester Shilton, Whitworth, Rofe, Earle, Munro, Cross, Weller, Sammels, Worthington, Birchenall, Tomlin – sub woolett(unused)



Denis Law, two goal FA Cup hero last week, was again on the mark, giving City a 37th minute lead against fourth placed Leicester at Maine Road this afternoon.
Law freed by Manchester United in the summer, scored his eighth goal of the season after Colin Bell had headed down a left wing corner from Mike Summerbee.
Only about 25,000 saw Leicester, who had not lost to a Lancashire side this season, start with Tomlin coming in briskly from the left. Backed up by Rofe, Leicester threatened the Blues, with the full back swinging in a cross that Booth headed behind when challenged by Worthington.
The corner from Weller was dangerous, but Barrett classically brought the ball down to clear.
However, City’s first attack had Leicester at panic stations. From a quickly taken throw-in by Marsh on the left, Donachie lifted the ball into the middle, Law could not quite control it as he came in by the far post, but the Blues still won a corner from which Bell’s shot was again deflected behind.
From a cross on the left, Whitworth scrambled the ball behind and then Summerbee turned to drive in a sharp low shot that Shilton took well.
In a tremendous opening, the inventive Leicester almost took the lead in the sixth minute.
A polished build-up started when Weller pulled the ball into the path of Earle, whose first time shot brought a magnificent reflex action save from Macrae.
After Summerbee had shot straight at Shilton, Sammels gave the ball to Worthington, who broke clear of Booth before trying to chip the ball over Macrae’s head from 35 yards out. His effort dipped just over the crossbar.
City continued to build up pressure, particularly down the right. But Law was beaten to one chance by Cross and Lee did not respond to another potential opening.
Another convincing build-up had Leicester under pressure. Bell, Lee and Summerbee moved together smoothly before the winger crossed. Shilton was caught in two minds and was only able to palm the ball out to Towers. He jabbed in a shot that was blocked and Law caught the rebound to drive in another effort that was deflected behind for a corner.
Leicester counter-punched dangerously. Earle fed Tomlin, who pulled the ball back for Sammels to shoot inches over the bar.
After referee Styles had spoken to both Barrett and Tomlin following a clash, he booked Worthington for tripping Booth.
Two minutes later, another clash between Worthington and Booth ended with the City centre half having his shorts ripped off!
Trouble continued to simmer and Birchenall and Law appeared to trade punches following a head-on collision.
However, City got the football flowing again and took the flag kick himself and found Bell, who headed the ball down to his left, where Law shot left-footed past the unsighted Shilton just inside the far post.
A minute later Law, again at his sharpest, pulled the ball back intelligently for Marsh whose shot went just outside.
However, things had threatened to cut up rough shortly before City took their lead and Barnsley referee Keith Styles booked Leicester leader Frank Worthington after he had tripped Tommy Booth.
Two minutes before half-time Marsh again forced his way through the Leicester defence to get the ball in the net, but the effort was disallowed by the referee.
Then Donachie crossed accurately from the left for Summerbee to head just wide in a fierce pre-interval onslaught that had Leicester rocking.
Half-time: Manchester City 1 Leicester City 0
… In the 58th minute City had the ball in the Leicester net for the third time. But again it was disallowed. Lee had moved in from the left, teed the ball up for Towers, whose shot was deflected in by Law, but the Scot was just offside.
Despite their superiority, City were let off the hook when Weller drove over from the easiest chance of the game.
Having survived that scare City promptly hit back with a goal started and finished by Marsh.
In the 66th minute he picked up the ball in midfield, allowed Lee to take over and then Bell moved down the right before pulling the ball back into the middle where Marsh scored from close range.
Law, injured in the 69th minute, finally limped off three minutes later, receiving a standing ovation. He was replaced by Leman.
Macrae looked safe with his handling when Worthington drove in a close range shot.
Though Leicester mounted a late rally, City gave away nothing at the back, where Doyle again swept up immaculately.
The Blues continued to push for goal and a deflected shot from Bell went just wide of the post.
In fact three minutes from the end Bell blazed a shot against the bar after good work from Marsh, Lee and Summerbee. Then Marsh, clean through, saw Shilton make another fine save.
At the end, Leicester, who have not won at Maine Road since 1967, were a weary, well beaten side.

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