Premier League
Stoke2Leicester2

Stoke City 2-2 Leicester City

Peter Crouch
Peter Crouch scored his 52nd Premier League goal with his head

Stoke manager Mark Hughes said substitute Peter Crouch "changed the game for us", after the striker salvaged a draw for his side against Leicester in the Premier League.

The Potters twice came from behind to claim a point in a thrilling game at Bet365 Stadium, a result that maintained Claude Puel's unbeaten start as Leicester boss after the Frenchman's new side beat Everton in his first game in charge.

Switzerland playmaker Xherdan Shaqiri was involved in both of the home side's goals, curling in the first equaliser at the far post before providing the corner for substitute Crouch's thumping header.

Hughes said: "Peter was effective when he came on. He always gets himself in a good position and he understood what was required. He changed the game for us.

"It is important that you consistently pick up points. We won't win every game, we won't lose every game. It is about getting a steady return in terms of points. Every time you get a Premier League point you should celebrate."

Leicester went ahead when Vicente Iborra lashed home from a corner and the Spaniard could have had a first-half hat-trick but had a close-range effort blocked and powered a header over the crossbar.

Former PFA Player of the Year Riyad Mahrez impressed throughout for the visitors and cut in from the left to drill home Leicester's second, before Crouch levelled.

Foxes goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel made a string of saves to preserve a point, the best of which came from Kurt Zouma's header in the last minute of added time.

A point to prove for Puel

Claude Puel
Leicester have scored two goals against both Everton and Stoke under Claude Puel, who ended his time at Southampton with just one goal in his last six games

The appointment of Puel received a largely underwhelming reaction from Leicester supporters as a result of Southampton being judged to have had a conservative style of play when he was in charge at St Mary's.

He guided the south coast club to eighth place in the league and a cup final, but ended his time at Saints with one goal in his final six games.

But the 56-year-old seems to have permitted his new charges a more free-flowing approach, allowing Algeria forward Mahrez and the spritely Demarai Gray to roam in the final third.

Gray, often a fringe player under previous Foxes managers Claudio Ranieri and Craig Shakespeare, has started both games under Puel and showed against Stoke how dangerous he can be with his pace and trickery.

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Stoke 2-2 Leicester: Claude Puel 'happy' with Foxes intensity

After requesting a transfer in the summer, Mahrez has also improved recently, delivering a goal or an assist in each of his past four league games and scoring on his 150th appearance for the club.

Midfielder Iborra netted his first Leicester goal as Stoke failed to clear but the former Sevilla player - who was imposing in the middle of the park, winning the ball seven times - limped off with an ankle injury in the second half.

Leicester ultimately had Schmeichel to thank for the point though, the Denmark keeper making five impressive saves including keeping out low drives from Shaqiri and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting as well as efforts from defenders Zouma and Ryan Shawcross.

Puel said: "I am happy with the attitude of my players. It was a good game, good intensity and passion.

"We had a lot of chances today, it is difficult to accept one point, but Kasper saved well at the end so OK, we take a point. It is an encouraging game which is important for the future."

Super sub saves Stoke

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Stoke 2-2 Leicester: Potters showed great character - Mark Hughes

The introduction of Crouch for winger Ramadan Sobhi signalled a more direct approach for the hosts - and it paid off.

The former England striker came on as a substitute for the 142nd time in the Premier League - equalling ex-Newcastle forward Shola Ameobi's record - and his goal was the 52nd time he has scored with his head, which extends his own record.

Only Jermain Defoe (23 goals) plus Nwankwo Kanu and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, both with 17, have scored more off the bench.

Crouch said: "It would be nice to be starting and scoring goals but that is the way things are going for me. So I have to come on and make an impact and try and get in the starting XI.

"It was an important point. In the last couple of weeks having Ryan Shawcross back has helped in defence - we have been dogged."

Stoke continued their sketchy start to the season and Mark Hughes' side have won just three times in the league so far, leaving them only four points above the relegation zone.

England's Plan B?

Former Premier League goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer on Final Score:

"I am not surprised at all that he is still going. He is 36 but still fit, looks after himself and is a great professional. He is a great character to have around the changing room and a fantastic option to bring off the bench.

"I think there is a case to say that he is a Plan B for England. Why can you not say that? Look at Euro 2016 against Iceland, there was no Plan B. Now what do England have as an alternative to playing football at the moment? They do not have very much.

"The closest is Andy Carroll but is he fitter than Crouch? That is the problem. Crouch would be more than happy just to be part of the squad and he has incredible experience and scores goals in the Premier League."

Man of the match - Riyad Mahrez (Leicester)

Riyad Mahrez
Two goals and two assists in his last four games have indicated Mahrez is getting back to something approaching his best form and have reminded everyone of the ability that made him a key part of Leicester's Premier League triumph

What next?

The international break is coming up so the sides are not in action for a couple of weeks. Stoke's next match is a trip to Brighton on Monday, 20 November (kick-off 20:00 GMT) while Leicester host Manchester City on Saturday, 18 November (15:00 GMT).

Potter in the box - the stats

  • This is the third successive Premier League season this fixture has ended in a 2-2 draw.
  • Stoke City fielded an unchanged starting XI in a Premier League game for the first time since February 26, after 22 consecutive league matches where their line-up changed.
  • Darren Fletcher has now appeared in 102 consecutive Premier League matches for his current and previous clubs (West Brom and Stoke combined) - the joint-fifth longest run by an outfield player in Premier League history.
  • Vicente Iborra scored his first goal in 16 league appearances since netting in La Liga for Sevilla against Athletic Bilbao in March.
  • Xherdan Shaqiri's goal was only the third (of nine in total) he has scored inside the box as a Premier League player - the last time he scored a league goal in the area was December 2015.
  • Shaqiri has now been involved in 21 Premier League goals (nine goals, 12 assists) - more than double the number of any other Swiss player (Ramon Vega had 10).

Line-ups

Stoke

  • 1Butland
  • 6Zouma
  • 17Shawcross
  • 5Wimmer
  • 18DioufSubstituted forBerahinoat 86'minutes
  • 24Fletcher
  • 4Allen
  • 3Pieters
  • 22Shaqiri
  • 32SobhiSubstituted forCrouchat 69'minutes
  • 10Choupo-Moting

Substitutes

  • 9Berahino
  • 11Rodríguez Ruiz
  • 14Afellay
  • 15Martins Indi
  • 16Adam
  • 25Crouch
  • 33Grant

Leicester

  • 1Schmeichel
  • 2Simpson
  • 5Morgan
  • 15Maguire
  • 28Fuchs
  • 26Mahrez
  • 21IborraSubstituted forKingat 66'minutes
  • 25Ndidi
  • 7GraySubstituted forAlbrightonat 80'minutes
  • 20OkazakiSubstituted forIheanachoat 58'minutes
  • 9Vardy

Substitutes

  • 8Iheanacho
  • 10King
  • 11Albrighton
  • 12Hamer
  • 16Dragovic
  • 18Amartey
  • 19Slimani
Referee:
Robert Madley
Attendance:
29,602

Match Stats

Home TeamStokeAway TeamLeicester
Possession
Home47%
Away53%
Shots
Home11
Away14
Shots on Target
Home7
Away4
Corners
Home4
Away10
Fouls
Home12
Away8

Live Text

Match ends, Stoke City 2, Leicester City 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Stoke City 2, Leicester City 2.

Attempt saved. Kurt Zouma (Stoke City) with an attempt from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Xherdan Shaqiri with a cross.

Corner, Stoke City. Conceded by Danny Simpson.

Foul by Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City).

Darren Fletcher (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt blocked. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (Stoke City) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Peter Crouch.

Offside, Leicester City. Riyad Mahrez tries a through ball, but Kelechi Iheanacho is caught offside.

Attempt missed. Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jamie Vardy.

Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Peter Crouch (Stoke City).

Substitution

Substitution, Stoke City. Saido Berahino replaces Mame Biram Diouf.

Wes Morgan (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Mame Biram Diouf (Stoke City).

Christian Fuchs (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Xherdan Shaqiri (Stoke City).

Attempt missed. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (Stoke City) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Xherdan Shaqiri following a set piece situation.

Foul by Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City).

Darren Fletcher (Stoke City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City).

Joe Allen (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Marc Albrighton replaces Demarai Gray.

Harry Maguire (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Mame Biram Diouf (Stoke City).

Attempt missed. Jamie Vardy (Leicester City) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Kelechi Iheanacho.

Offside, Leicester City. Demarai Gray tries a through ball, but Jamie Vardy is caught offside.

Foul by Jamie Vardy (Leicester City).

Erik Pieters (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Goal!

Goal! Stoke City 2, Leicester City 2. Peter Crouch (Stoke City) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Xherdan Shaqiri with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Stoke City. Conceded by Wilfred Ndidi.

Attempt saved. Kurt Zouma (Stoke City) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Joe Allen.

Attempt missed. Andy King (Leicester City) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a corner.

Corner, Leicester City. Conceded by Kevin Wimmer.

Offside, Leicester City. Andy King tries a through ball, but Kelechi Iheanacho is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Stoke City. Peter Crouch replaces Ramadan Sobhi.

Attempt blocked. Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Riyad Mahrez.

Substitution

Substitution, Leicester City. Andy King replaces Vicente Iborra because of an injury.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Vicente Iborra (Leicester City) because of an injury.

Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Man City109103562928
2Man Utd107212341923
3Tottenham106221971220
4Chelsea106131810819
5Arsenal106131913619
6Liverpool115422117419
7Burnley11542109119
8Brighton114341111015
9Watford104331518-315
10Huddersfield11434813-515
11Newcastle114251010014
12Leicester113441616013
13Southampton11344911-213
14Stoke113351322-912
15West Brom11245914-510
16Bournemouth11317714-710
17West Ham112361123-129
18Swansea11227713-68
19Everton10226720-138
20Crystal Palace10118421-174
View full Premier League table

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