Harvey Barnes scores late Leicester leveller to aggrieve West Ham

Substitute has final say in West Ham’s 2-2 draw with Leicester after Lucas Pérez thought he had scored the winner

A stoppage-time equaliser from substitute Harvey Barnes – his first goal in the Premier League – rescued a point for Leicester as Brendan Rodgers’s side kept alive their chances of qualifying for the Europa League.

The Leicester manager will think his side can still seal seventh spot even after Michail Antonio had given Manuel Pellegrini’s side the lead in the first half. Lucas Pérez thought he had won it after an equaliser from Jamie Vardy but it was another substitute in the form of Barnes who had the final say in stoppage time, even if West Ham’s manager felt aggrieved that another Pérez effort moments earlier was disallowed for offside despite replays showing he was level.

“Unfortunately for us we lost five points,” said Pellegrini. “If we had the points that we deserved in the last game against Manchester United and today then we could be fighting for seventh position. When you have two games in a row with such big mistakes then it is hard to take.”

The sense of injustice after the defeat against United last week - West Ham’s third successive loss in the league – had appeared to drive forward his side in the first period in which they dominated their visitors. Pellegrini had recalled Marko Arnautovic after he missed the United game while a groin injury to Manuel Lanzini also meant a return for Antonio. Rodgers also made two changes including the return of Marc Albrighton after more than two months out with a hamstring problem.

Michail Antonio takes a lie down on the new stadium carpet after opening the scoring.
Michail Antonio takes a lie down on the new stadium carpet after opening the scoring. Photograph: Richard Calver/Rex/Shutterstock

Leicester’s defeat against Newcastle last week had somewhat dampened their hopes of snatching seventh spot and judging by their approach to the first half here, there is plenty of work to be done as a lackadaisical display allowed West Ham to take a deserved lead through Antonio eight minutes before the break. The winger had already been denied twice through last-ditch defending but made no mistake after Felipe Anderson’s cross was delivered perfectly into box, rising above Ben Chilwell before celebrating by rolling around on the new £250,000 claret and blue carpet surrounding the pitch that was making its debut.

A lengthy dispute with landlords the London Legacy Development Corporation had meant the unveiling of the new carpet was delayed until this week, with Pellegrini spending most of the first period testing it out on the 30-metre walk from dugout to pitchside and back. Rodgers was often not far behind as he attempted to cajole his side into a response in the second half, although the home supporters seemed in the mood to tease and responded by chanting “You’re only here for the carpet” when one half-chance was spurned.

Barnes was summoned from the bench and the result was an equaliser within three minutes as Vardy was on hand to stab home Chilwell’s low cross at the near post after the England defender was given acres of space to deliver.

Suddenly, Leicester looked enthused by their task and could have gone ahead had James Maddison picked out Vardy with a quarter of an hour to play.

It looked like they had been made to pay when Pérez was the first to react when Pedro Obiang’s shot came back off a post and the points would surely have been safe had his second goal been allowed to stand after a pinpoint pass from Obiang. But a superb through-ball from Youri Tielemans as the clock ticked into additional time allowed Barnes the opportunity to spoil West Ham’s day.

“We showed a great mentality,” said Rodgers. “We’re trying to create that spirit that allows you to dig out results so to come twice from behind was very pleasing.”

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