Rams held by Foxes
By Graeme Bailey
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Derby County missed the chance to go five points clear at the top of the Championship.
Derby County missed the chance to go five points clear at the top of the Championship after being held to a 1-1 draw at Leicester.
Derby went ahead against the run of play when Craig Fagan fired home midway through the first half.
But Leicester were not to be denied the point they deserved as substitute Matty Fryatt fired home.
Leicester began brightly and Stephen Hughes fired over early on.
Then the game turned as Leicester were seemingly denied a blatant penalty by Premiership referee Howard Webb when he failed to spot Darren Moore tugging and holding Patrick Kisnorbo.
The resulting clearance then saw Derby take the lead. A quick flowing move saw Giles Barnes pick out the run of Fagan and he supplied a sublime finish to put Derby ahead.
Barnes himself almost doubled Derby's lead just before the break but his excellent turn and shot flew just over the stanchion of the goal.
Iain Hume and Danny Tiatto - both impressive all afternoon - did their best to create an opening, but they fired over from the edge of the box.
Stephen Bywater was then at full stretch to deny Hume, but The Foxes did finally force the goal they deserved with 22 minutes left.
Fryatt had been on the pitch barely ten minutes when he picked up the ball in the box, fended off the attentions of Dean Leacock and swept the ball home with his left foot.
That goal actually spurred Derby into their best spell of the game and they missed a couple of great chances to re-take the lead.
Moore headed well over from a corner when he should have hit the target, before Fagan spurned a glorious chance to level.
He picked up the ball ten yards out after Arturo Lupoli allowed the ball to run - but he could not beat Paul Henderson in the home goal.
Lupoli wasted a chance in the dying minutes, as did Levi Porter - who tested Bywater from the edge of the box, when he should have scored.
The point means Derby can now be replaced at the top of the table by rivals Birmingham - who entertain Burnley on Saturday, while Leicester are now eight points clear of the relegation places.