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Published: 16:09 | 17/4/16

Ranieri: Sending off changed our match

Leicester drew 2-2 with West Ham

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri says the sending off of Jamie Vardy changed the game in his side’s 2-2 draw with West Ham, but he refused to criticise the referee’s performance.

The home side were 1-0 up, through a Vardy goal, when the striker was sent off for a second booking.

The referee, John Moss, then went on to give West Ham a controversial penalty before the Hammers took the lead with four minutes left.

Moss was again in the thick of the action in the final minute when he awarded Leciester a penalty as the game ended 2-2. Ranieri, though, refused to criticise the official, preferring instead to praise his players.

"The sending off changed our match,” said Ranieri.

"I judge my players not the referee, the referee is not my matter.

"Our performance was fantastic, this is our soul, we play every match with this, blood, heart and soul, it was magnificent. This point is very important psychologically."

Slaven Bilic, on the other hand, was furious with Moss' and his late decision to award a penalty as he felt his side did enough to win the game.

"We are gutted, we did enough to win the game, before last five seconds.

"The game went that way, hard for referee with the crowd. I feel for him, although it was not a penalty.

"On one hand Leicester is right, it is not a penalty, they have been doing this all year,” said Bilic.

"We showed character and quality, even in the first-half. They scored from counter-attack but we didn't lose shape, we coped well in second-half with counterattacks after equaliser we didn't stop searching for a second goal.

“Cresswell scored a great goal and then that happened. We did enough to win the game and deserved to win it."

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