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Foxes prowling for another upset

| 18.04.2017

England’s hope still in with a chance

Leicester City invite Atletico Madrid to the King Power on Tuesday evening with every chance of claiming their place in the semi-finals. Shakespeare and co go into the second-leg on the back of a 1-0 defeat in the reverse, meaning this one remains very much in the balance.

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Leicester feeling cheated

The Premier League champions, currently down in 12th place, with every chance of a remarkable top-half finish this season, weren’t given a chance over at the Vicente Calderon Stadium last week, but they proved more than a match for their big-name opponents, going down only to a dodgy penalty decision.

Antoine Griezmann converted from the spot on 28 minutes, his 24th for Atletico this season, after Marc Albrighton had fouled the scorer. Shakespeare told the press at full-time that the ref had guessed at the award, and replays show that to be true, with the original offence taking place outside of the box.

Griezmann was on target twice against Barcelona in the Champions League last season.

Locals a big price for another win to nil

That injustice will add fuel to the fire for the locals and their fans, who know their side are capable of the impossible on their day, and have shown it more than once before. Back on English soil they will fancy their chances of making this one interesting, but our football guys have Leicester as big as 9/2 to qualify, Madrid a razor-thin 1/8. Taking a chance on the upset looks worthwhile.

Leicester overturned a 2-1 first leg defeat in the last round when beating Atletico’s La Liga rivals Sevilla 2-0 in March. At present there’s very little between Madrid and Sevilla in the league, three points the current gap, meaning those loyal to Leicester will fancy their chances of doing something similar here. The home side to win to nil again has been chalked up at 24/5, while a home win, regardless of how they achieve it, can be backed at a tempting 27/10.

Huth leaves a hole at the back

A real negative for Leicester is the absence of inspirational defender Robert Huth. The 32-year-old has been a rock in his employer’s backline this season, but misses the return through suspension. It doesn’t do much to encourage confidence in the English side to know that Koke, Niguez, Gabi and Griezmann were all rested at the weekend, but return to action here. Home fans will need another sprinkling of fairy dust on Tuesday.

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Frank Monkhouse