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Leicester City 2-2 Everton: Foxes’ fight back to nick late draw (video)

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The last nine times these teams have met they have drawn on seven occasions, so there was no surprise when this one ended in a tie.

What a game and what a return to the big-time for the Foxes.

Premier League new boys Leicester City fought back to draw 2-2 against Everton at the King Power Stadium on Saturday in an hugely entertaining game. Everton went ahead through Aiden McGeady’s wonderstrike early on, but less than 90 seconds later Leonardo Ulloa equalized for the Foxes. Just before half time Steven Naismith put the Toffees back in front with a fine equalizer.

They held that lead until five minutes from the end, but Tim Howard’s side couldn’t hold on as substitute Chris Wood slotted home to give Leicester their first PL points in a decade.

[VIDEO: McGeady scores wondergoal]

Leicester City started brightly at the King Power Stadium as some delicious deliveries tested Howard and his Everton defense. In the 16th minute Wes Morgan smashed an effort from the edge of the box just wide of the post as the Foxes settled back into life in the PL.

However in the 21st minute Everton took the lead through a superb strike from McGeady. After a corner the ball broke to Leighton Baines on the edge of the box, the left back’s shot was deflected into Sylvain Distin’s path who saw his effort blocked by Kasper Schmeichel but the rebound fell to McGeady who curled home an inch-perfect strike into the top corner. 1-0 to the Toffees.

Less than 90 seconds later Leicester were level as Ulloa scored on his debut following his move from Brighton and Hove Albion this summer. The Argentine striker reacted quickly as Everton failed to clear an out-swinging corner from the left and Ulloa pounced to make it 1-1.

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In an hugely entertaining game the Toffees reacted well to conceding as Steven Naismith and Romelu Lukaku combined to carve out some chances. Everton went close through McGeady on two more occasions as the Irish winger proved a real livewire in the opening 45 minutes. Leicester were dealt a blow just before half time as Danny Drinkwater hobbled off injured and was replaced by Dean Hammond.

Just before the break they got an even bigger blow as Naismith finished superbly to clip Baines’ cross in off the crossbar. Everton were 2-1 up at the break. Leicester bombarded Everton’s goal with set pieces and the home side were spurred on by their fans as they pushed for an equalizer in the second half.

A lengthy stoppage disrupted the flow of the second half as James McCarthy looked to have overstretched his knee ligaments when challenging for a ball in midfield. The Scottish international returned to the pitch and continued but looked far from comfortable. Leicester brought on Jeffrey Schlupp and he went clean through against Howard within seconds of coming on. However the young attacker lost his composure and smashed the ball high and wide, then fell to the turf in disbelief. A wasted chance for the Foxes to equalize.

[RELATED: Latest Premier League standings]

That missed didn’t upset the Foxes stride and substitute Wood equalized with five minutes to go. Everton again failed to clear their lines sufficiently and the ball fell to the New Zealand international on the left side of the box. He slotted home coolly for his first-ever PL goal to bag a point for Leicester and leave Everton shaking their heads.

LINEUPS

Leicester: Schmeichel, De Laet, Moore, Morgan, Konchesky, Mahrez, King, Drinkwater (Hammond, 39′), Knockaert (Schlupp, 64′), Nugent, Ulloa (Wood, 78′)

Goals: Ulloa (22′), Wood (85′)

Everton: Howard, Stones, Jagielka, Distin, Baines, McCarthy, Barry, McGeady (Coleman, 85′), Naismith, Pienaar (Mirallas, 81′), Lukaku.

Goals: McGeady (20′), Naismith (45′)

Watch: Scott Sinclair nets stunning curler in Celtic victory

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Celtic is enjoying another fine campaign in Scotland, and much of the team’s success can be attributed to the play of Scott Sinclair.

[ MORE: Burkina Faso, Cameroon progress at AFCON 2017 ]

The Englishman was at it again on Sunday during Celtic’s 3-0 Scottish Cup win over Albion Rovers when the 27-year-old curled an absolutely sublime effort into the top corner for the game’s opening goal.

The finish, Sinclair’s 13th of the season in all competitions, came after the winger picked up the ball on the left side of the Albion penalty area. Sinclair then proceeded to slot his dipping shot just under the bar and into the far post.

Celtic now moves on to the fifth round of this season’s tournament, joining the likes of Rangers and Aberdeen. In addition to the team’s success in the competition, the Bhoys have yet to lose a match in the Scottish Premier League this campaign (19 W, 1 D).

La Liga & Serie A: Sevilla avoids Osasuna upset, Barcelona cruises

EIBAR, SPAIN - JANUARY 22:  Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona competes for the ball with Ander Capa (L) and Dani Garcia of SD Eibar during the La Liga match between SD Eibar and FC Barcelona at Ipurua stadium on January 22, 2017 in Eibar, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
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A roundup of Saturday’s action in Spain and Italy’s top flights…

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s La Liga coverage ]

Eibar 0-4 Barcelona 

Four different goalscorers and three points has put Barcelona inches closer to Real Madrid at the top of La Liga, and it certainly was a complete effort for the Blaugrana. Denis Suarez gave Barca the lead ahead of halftime before Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar each netted in the second stanza to give Luis Enrique’s side a strangle hold on the match. Barca now sits just two points behind Real as the season nears its halfway point.

Meanwhile, Barca suffered a major loss during the match when Sergio Busquets was carted off the pitch after sustaining an ankle injury. Busquets left the game after receiving the brunt of a Gonzalo Escalante tackle in the eighth minute.

Osasuna 3-4 Sevilla

There were goals galore at the Estadio El Sadar, however, Osasuna remains at the bottom of La Liga despite their best efforts. The last place side led on two occasions against Sevilla, but a strong second half from the visitors allowed Los Rojiblancos to remain within a point of league leaders Real Madrid. Vicente Iborra recorded a brace for Sevilla, with goals on both sides of halftime, while Franco Vázquez and Pablo Sarabia also inked their names on the score sheet.

Athletic Bilbao 2-2 Atletico Madrid

Atleti went ahead early on against Bilbao, but Diego Simeone’s men needed a late Antoine Griezmann finish to earn a point on Sunday. Koke struck inside of three minutes to give Madrid the early advantage before goals from Íñigo Lekue and Oscar de Marcos gave Bilbao the lead. Atletico has now fallen eight points behind Real Madrid, while Bilbao sits seventh on 29 points.

Elsewhere in La Liga

Real Betis 0-0 Sporting Gijon
Real Sociedad 1-0 Celta Vigo


Juventus 2-0 Lazio

Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuain each found the back of the net early on for Juventus and Massimiliano Allegri’s side never looked back from there. After scoring in the fifth and 16th minutes, respectively, the Bianconeri remain atop of Serie A after picking up the team’s 16th win on the season. Lazio remains fourth following the defeat, now sitting eight points behind the league leaders.

Roma 1-0 Cagliari

Edin Dzeko netted his 14th league goal of season for Roma on Sunday en route to the team’s fifth consecutive victory in all competitions. The win sees Roma move to within a point of Juventus at the top of Italy’s top flight, however, the Bianconeri currently hold a game in hand. Meanwhile, Cagliari sits 11th in Serie A on 26 points.

Sunday’s Serie A schedule

Bologna 2-0 Torino
Empoli 1-0 Udinese
Genoa 2-2 Crotone
Palermo 0-1 Inter Milan
Pescara 1-3 Sassuolo
Atalanta 1-0 Sampdoria

AFCON wrap: Burkina Faso tops Group A, Cameroon also through

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - SEPTEMBER 29:  Bertrand Traore of Ajax is chalenged by Darwin Andrade of Standard Liege during the UEFA Europa League group G match between AFC Ajax and  R. Standard de Liege at the Amsterdam Arena on September 29, 2016 in Amsterdam, Netherlands.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
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One down, three to go.

Two nations advanced out of Group A on Sunday, and neither of the spots were held by the tournament’s hosts.

[ MORE: All AFCON 2017 coverage ]

Cameroon 0-0 Gabon

Hosts Gabon needed a victory to reach the final eight, however, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and co. struggled mightily to break down the Cameroonian backline.

The Panthers failed to manage a shot on target on Sunday, while Cameroon — who finishes second in Group A — recorded a shot goalward just once.

Cameroon will likely face Senegal in the knockout phase after the Lions of Teranga locked up a spot in the next round.

Guinea-Bissau 0-2 Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso topped the group based on goal differential after an early own goal and Bertrand Traore added a second after halftime.

Rudinilson Silva was caught in an uncomfortable position after 11 minutes when the Guinea-Bissau defender put the ball into his own net. From there, Traore doubled the advantage for Burkina Faso after finishing off a Prejuce Nakoulma pass.

The Stallions will face the runner up of Group B, currently Tunisia, in the quarterfinals.

Group A table (* indicates teams that advanced)

*Burkina Faso (5 points, +2 GD)
*Cameroon (5 pts., +1 GD)
Gabon (3 pts., 0 GD)
Guinea-Bissau (1 pt., -3 GD)

Monday’s AFCON schedule

Senegal vs. Algeria — 11 a.m. ET
Zimbabwe vs. Tunisia — 2 p.m. ET

Henry bashes Arsenal’s Xhaka after second red card of season

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 22:  Granit Xhaka (2nd R) of Arsenal talks to Steven Defour (1st R) of Burnley before shown a red card during the Premier League match between Arsenal and Burnley at the Emirates Stadium on January 22, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
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It’s become a trend, albeit one that the Gunners certainly aren’t too fond of. Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka was sent off for the second time this season and while his side did manage to hold on to three points, the Swiss international has quickly made a name for himself in England for all the wrong reasons.

[ MORE: Arsene Wenger apologizes for sending off ]

Xhaka, 24, was dismissed in the second half of Sunday’s 2-1 win over Burnley after making a rash challenge on Clarets midfielder Steven Defour in the 65th minute.

[ MORE: Gunners up to second place after handling Burnley ]

Former Arsenal legend Thierry Henry sounded off on Xhaka’s latest dismissal following the match, calling out the midfielder for his lack of discipline.

“It’s not the first time. He did the same thing against Swansea,” Henry told Sky Sports. “This one I just don’t get it. Against Swansea it was a counter. Here, he gives the ball cheaply away.

“Why are you doing that 60 yards away from your goal, 25 minutes to go, you’re in control of the game? You misplace a pass. So what? Stay on your feet.

“As soon as you do that, the rules say it’s a red. Is it worse than [Marcos] Rojo who didn’t get a red? No. But the rule says both feet off the ground, it’s a red.”

Since the beginning of 2015, Xhaka has been shown red cards on six occasions dating back to the midfielder’s time with German club Borussia Monchengladbach, and including appearances for both club and country.

Xhaka’s suspension will keep him out of Arsenal’s next three matches, including home fixtures with Watford and Hull and a difficult road visit to Chelsea.