Nottingham Forest 4-1 Leicester: FA Cup champions eliminated in thrilling fourth-round tie

FA Cup champions Leicester City suffered a surprise fourth-round defeat to East Midlands rivals Nottingham Forest in a vibrant game at the City Ground.

Forest, eighth in the Championship, took the lead with a well-crafted goal that saw Keinan Davis head in a cross from Brennan Johnson and Philip Zinckernagel pushed the ball past Danny Ward.

Within 30 seconds, the hosts had doubled their lead, Johnson finishing off a terrible back pass from James Justin. It became 3-0 when captain Joe Worrall headed the far post from a James Garner corner kick.

Premier League Leicester were given a lifeline when home goalkeeper Brice Samba made a mistake and that allowed Kelechi Iheanacho to roll the ball into an unprotected net, but they were unable to fight back.

Forest restored their three-goal lead when Djed Spence ran and slid the ball past Ward to set up a fifth-round home draw against fellow Championship side Huddersfield Town.

Joe Worrall
Captain Joe Worrall, scorer of Nottingham Forest’s third goal, was playing for the first time after missing three games with a broken rib last month.

Most of the match was played in front of an excellent atmosphere at a packed City Ground, although there was an unpleasant incident after Forest’s third goal. One fan ran onto the pitch before being tackled by security, and police later made an arrest.

Leicester’s FA Cup defense crumbles

It was only in May that Youri Tielemans scored an impressive 25-yard strike as Leicester beat Chelsea 1-0 at Wembley as the Foxes won the FA Cup for the first time in their history.

But Brendan Rodgers’ side fell meekly at this hurdle as Leicester followed Arsenal out of the competition after the Gunners lost 1-0 at Forest in the third round.

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However, in front of a crowd of 28,762, Forest was excellent. In the fifth round for the second time in 17 years, they were not flattered by the margin of victory against a team 10th in the top flight.

It might have been a different game had Iheanacho scored inside the first five minutes, but instead he fired wide. Forest, backed by vocal support from fans of his, then took control inside a crazy five-minute spell midway through the half.

This was the first meeting between the two teams in nearly eight years, but it was hard to tell which was playing in the higher division.

Davis showed excellent technique to volley against the Leicester bar before Zinckernagel’s first goal, and the visitors gifted Forest a second goal only moments later.

Worrall, back after a three-game absence with broken ribs last month, scored Forest’s third in the 32nd minute, capping an impressive nine-minute spell that took the game past Leicester.

Samba’s error, when he came out of his box to challenge Iheanacho, gifted Leicester a 40th-minute goal and the Foxes started the second half brilliantly with James Maddison and substitute Patson Daka missing chances.

But the excellent Spence killed the game in the 61st minute, rushing in and shooting Forest’s fourth.

A more abject defense followed which Rodgers will not be happy about as his team’s cup defense ended in disappointment.


Nottm Forest

Training 3-4-1-2

  • 30Samba
  • 4Worrall
  • 27S cook
  • 26mckenna
  • twospending
  • 22yachts
  • 37BarnReserved at 65 minutesReplaced forRibeiro Daysin 88′minutes
  • fifteenunder
  • elevenzinc nailReplaced forcolbackin 63′minutes
  • twentyJohnsonReplaced forsilva coastin 88′minutes
  • 9DavisReplaced forSurridgein 71′minutes


  • oneHorvath
  • 3Figueiredo
  • 8colback
  • 14Laryea
  • sixteenSurridge
  • 18Ribeiro Days
  • 19silva coast
  • twenty-oneOjeda
  • 23lolly


Training 4-2-3-1

  • 12pavilion
  • twojustin
  • 18Amartey
  • 4soyuncu
  • 33Thomas
  • 8TielemannsReplaced forDewsbury-Hallin Sixty-five’minutes
  • 25PatienceReserved at 59 minutes
  • 37lookoutReplaced forRicardo Pereirain Sixty-five’minutes
  • 10MadisonReserved at 74 minutes
  • 7BarnesReplaced forDakain Four. Five’minutes
  • 14Iheanacho


  • oneSchmeichel
  • elevenAlbrighton
  • 17perez
  • twentyChoudhury
  • twenty-oneRicardo Pereira
  • 22Dewsbury-Hall
  • 23Vestergaard
  • 29Daka
  • 42Soumare

Paul Tierney


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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