Connolly wins it for Foxes
By Simon Fudge. Last Updated: 26/04/05 9:45pm
A second half strike from David Connolly was enough to hand Leicester a 1-0 win against Midlands rivals Derby County at The Walkers Stadium.
The win assured Championship safety for Craig Levein's side while The Rams missed a glorious chance to secure a place in next month's play-offs following the defeat.
The home side had the better of the first half opportunities, with Connolly missing the target with a right foot volley while Dion Dublin then failed to bother Rams goalkeeper Lee Camp with a far post header from Alan Maybury's cross from the right.
Leicester's best chance fell to an unmarked Patrick McCarthy, but he failed to connect with Jordan Stewart's foot free kick right in front of Camp's goal.
The Foxes continued to pressure their Midlands rivals, with skipper Danny Tiatto missing with two chances of his own.
The Rams rarely threatened Leicester's goal, but their best chance fell to Marco Reich, but his left foot strike flew just wide of the far post.
The half ended with Leicester on the attack, as Dublin shot over Camp's crossbar with a bicycle kick from Maybury's cross while Connolly was adjudged offside after scoring Dublin's knockdown in the Derby box.
The second half saw Derby boss George Burley substitute Grzegorz Rasiak for Paul Peschisolido to provide a boost in their attack.
However, The Foxes deservedly broke the deadlock five minutes after the restart, as Connolly sublimely took down Tiatto's cross in the Derby box before finishing right footed past Camp to make it 1-0.
Seconds later, Tiatto had a great chance to score a second, but his run into Derby's box saw Camp just do enough to put him off, as the ball rolled out for a goal kick.
The goal prompted The Rams to push forward, but they struggled to break Leicester's backline down, with substitute Ian Taylor squandering a close range chance in an unmarked position in front of Walker's goal.
Derby's best chance to level came in the dying stages, but Walker did well to block Tommy Smith's point blank strike to keep a clean sheet.
In the end, Leicester secured their place in The Championship with victory while Derby will need results in their final two matches to secure a play-off place.
Sky Bet Championship
|4||Queens Park Rangers||43||73|
|6||Brighton and Hove Albion||43||65|