Barnsley 0 Foxes 1
What a difference a week makes – before the Preston game I couldn't see us winning, today I couldn't see us not winning – and the upbeat mood was certainly in evidence with the bumper 4,000 following in sunny Yorkshire. There was a 'last day' feel to proceedings, and a nostalgic feel as I filtered in to the singing army that were being marched to the ground from the train station by friendly coppers.
Both teams only realistically needed a point for safety, but it was clear straight from kick-off that there was no West Germany-Austria World Cup 1982 style fix going on. The first half was played at a high tempo but with neither keeper tested, unchanged Leicester generally looking the better team with everyone conveying an impression of knowing what their role was and being confident in their ability to do it, the youngsters Mattock and Wesolowski catching the eye.
The game came to life early in the second half when two surprising events conspired to give us the lead. Firstly, the linesman kept his flag down after a dozen previous offsides and Matty Fryatt lobbed the advancing keeper. The covering defender looked to have an easy job to head the ball over his own bar, but instead he tried to divert it wide and only succeeded in heading it into the corner of his own net. Cue wild celebrations as safety became all but guaranteed. Barnsley did fight back as the game opened up, Stearman was out of sorts again as the Tykes exploited his flank, but stout defending and solid goalkeeping kept the sheet clean. At the other end, we managed to blow several promising breakaways, Newton being denied by two fine low saves.
It was all doom and gloom in the home end as the Barnsley fans anticipated a final day showdown, but then something rather splendid happened. It's not often both sets of fans can be simultaneously happy, in fact I've only seen it happen in 3 instances, here they are in reverse order:
3rd: Ref / linesman falls over / gets injured
2nd: Dog or other animal on pitch, players have to chase it
1st: Leeds conceed late equaliser to seal their own relegation……