Stalemate at an emotional King Power Stadium
LONDON - The scene recalled to mind the afternoon of May 7, 2016. That day the stands in this ground shimmered with white and blue flags. Another free gift to supporters, they were waved feverishly in anticipation of a Premier League trophy being raised. It was jubilation.
This time the effect that swept over the ground was a profound sense of solemnity.
In the Buddhist faith, the colour white reminds of the end of things and so moving was the video montage in tribute to Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, played on the big screen moments before Mike Dean blew his whistle, it was impossible not to feel the terrible events here a fortnight ago meant the end of a something special indeed.
Leicester will go on of course. Under the Srivaddhanaprabha family too.
But now the miracle of 2016 will forever be twinned with the tragedy of 2018. Recollections of highest pleasure tinged by deepest pain.
Underlining the point was the presence in the directors’ box of the three managers who took Leicester to such unexpected altitudes. For the first time Claudio Ranieri, Nigel Pearson, and Craig Shakespeare were together in the same place. They would not have wished it be so in these circumstances.
Joe Hart rushed out in the opening stages of the match to deny Demarai Gray a goal-scoring opportunity.