You couldn`t have written a better script. Lee Tomlin grew up supporting Leicester City and was on their books from the age of 9 until he was released 6 years ago when he was just 16 years old.
It was a bitter pill to swallow but he took the knock on the chin and found a good non-league team to re-build his career with at Rushden and Diamonds in the hope that a League team would spot his talents one day. Posh did just that and after a whirlwind 12 months where Tomlin established himself quickly into the first team, gained promotion via the League One Play-Off final at Old Trafford and is now playing regularly in the npower Championship, he finally had a chance to show Leicester what they let go and oh how Leicester may have regretted seeing Tomlin playing when he scored the equalising goal against them on Saturday!
With friends and family looking on, it was a proud moment for Tomlin to walk out onto the pitch, and it was Posh who started the brighter. This only lasted a matter of minutes though before Leicester`s dominance of the first half started!
Three corners in quick succession from Leicester soon followed and they also had an appeal for a penalty turned down when the ball appeared to strike the arm of Tommy Rowe.
David Nugent and Andy King both went close with Kings effort being cleared off the line by Alcock.
Joe Lewis then repaid Fergusons faith in him when the speedy Lloyd Dyer was closing in but Lewis was quick off his mark to dash out and parry the ball away before Dyer got his shot away. Leicester did pounce on the loose ball to fire past a diving Lewis but Ryan Bennett was in the right place at the right time to clear the ball away.
A dangerous free-kick from King was then headed wide of the goal on 23 minutes before the impressive Leicester centre-back Sol Bamba headed a corner from Gallagher wide of the goal.
Bamba had been a towering figure against Posh and easily dispossessed any Posh threat from the front duo of Taylor and Sinclair.
Taylor was having an off-day but it wasn`t clear if he had an injury or was just having a bad day at the office. On numerous occasions he either lost the ball easily, or delayed passing the ball or simply made the wrong choice so it was no surprise he was substituted at half time. Before then though, he did have Posh`s best chance of the first half when a rare mistake by Bamba, who was attempting a backpass which failed to reach Schmiechal, allowed Taylor to race into the box but his attempted lob over the advancing keeper failed miserably as Schmiechal produced a save that reminded you of his dad at his best.
That effort didn`t deter Posh as Leicester had their closest effort yet when loanee Jermaine Beckford saw his shot cannon off the upright.
In stoppage time, Lewis pulled off a magnificent save as he pushed a Nugent header that seemed destined for the net to safety.
Half-time: Leicester 0 – 0 Peterborough United
Ryan Tunnicliffe entered the fray at half time, replacing the out of sorts Taylor which saw Leicester boy Tomlin move up front to partner Sinclair.
Posh had the first significant effort of the second half when Boyd played in Sinclair but his shot from a tight angle was saved by Schmeichal.
A 50/50 challenge then left Posh captain, Grant McCann, down in a heap. Following treatment, he gingerly left the playing area while the match resumed. During this spell, with Posh down to 10 men, Leicester capitalised following a quick short corner which was closed down but with a fortunate bounce of the ball, GALLAGHER made the most of his chance by smacking the ball against the inside of the post and in to the net for what you had to say was a deserved lead.
McCann came back on for the kick-off but within seconds, he was down again and unable to continue.
The sprightly Daniel Kearns came on for McCann with Tunnicliffe dropping into the base of the diamond to take over from McCann.
Things seemed to get worse for Posh as Lee Frecklington then picked up an injury and had to be replaced by another youngster in Joe Newell.
With three of the four Posh midfielders now on display being teenagers, you could`ve expected the worse to happen but remarkably, the changes produced some much needed energy into the Posh midfield.
Just a minute after Newell`s introduction, a neat pass from the impressive Kearns put Sinclair through who crossed the ball for TOMLIN to meet powerfully with his head leaving Schmeichal with no chance.
Neil Danns replaced Gallagher in an attempt to stop the flow from Posh but as Posh were pressing forward, a crude challenge by Bamba on Sinclair earned him a yellow card. He wasn`t the only Leicester player to go in the book as the hosts were looking increasingly frustrated by the ever improving Posh. Both Konchesky and Nugent went into the referee`s book.
Leicester boss Nigel Pearson then made a double substitution with Jeffrey Schlupp and Steve Howard entering the arena in an effort to snatch the win.
Wellens then caused Lewis little problems with and effort on 78 minutes before Posh nearly snatched what would`ve been an undeserved victory in the 85th minute following a driving run from Tunnicliffe ended with a massive goalmouth scramble, but Posh were unable to force the ball into the net.
Full-time: Leicester 1 – 1 Peterborough United
POST MATCH QUOTES
After scoring against his boyhood team Leicester, Lee Tomlin said: “People don`t realise how hard I`ve had to work to get where I am today.
“I was knocked back at an early age and when I was at Rushden & Diamonds it usually involved walking for hours just to be able to train.”
Posh manager Darren Ferguson was obviously delighted for Tomlin: ‘I am pleased for Lee. He did really well today and deserved the goal he got.
‘We have got to be pleased with this result against a very good side. In the first half, when they were on top, we were resilient and dug in. I thought our back five were excellent today.
‘I was really pleased with the substitutes we brought on. They gave us composure and helped us keep the ball.’
Leicester boss was not as happy with the outcome though.
“It`s two points dropped for us, no question about that. We had some great situations and some good chances in a first half we dominated.” said Pearson.
“And then after taking the lead we should have been good enough to see the game out. If we win 1-0 no-one mentions the chances we missed.
“I was delighted with the way we started the game. We played at a terrific tempo and we caused them no end of problems so it`s disappointing we didn`t score when we were so much on top.
“Peterborough came more into the game in the second half, but we were still the better team and once we got in front we should have gone on and scored again.
“Instead we didn`t make them work hard enough for an equaliser. We knew all about the threat they have in front of goal, but we let them in too easily. It`s been a very frustrating day.”
Vital Posh Viewpoint
Leicester dominated this game for large parts but as we have seen on many occasions, the opposition often have very few chances on target which was the case for this game. Both sides had just 3 attempts on target!!
Leicester will no doubt cause many teams problems if they play like they did against Posh but they need to be more clinical in front of goal.
Posh will be happy with this draw as Leicester isn`t an easy place to pick points up from.
Posh defended resolutely in the first half without really causing too many problems for Leicester whose backline were expertly marshalled by Sol Bamba. It reminded me of a backs against the wall type defending when your team is down to 10 players, such was the defending and battling displayed by Posh.
The fortunes of Posh only really change when we were forced into two substitutions following injuries to McCann and Frecklington. Daniel Kearns once again looked impressive as he always wanted to get on the ball, do a few step-overs, take a man on and find a pass (which he did when setting Sinclair up to cross for Tomlin`s goal). Hopefully he`ll finally get his chance to start the game this coming Saturday.
It was an enjoyable day out at our near neighbours although the small cramped toilets left much to be admired!!
Posh will no doubt be the happier of the two teams as it is another point on the board towards Championship safety. That result means we are half way to our 50 point safety target with just over half the season remaining. Posh will have to be on their guard on Saturday to ensure they`re not over-confident when hosting basement team Coventry City. Hopefully we can get another win and another 3 points.
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UP THE POSH!
Follow me on Twitter: @mwl1967
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