FROM the sublime to the ridiculous and back again.
Everton clawed their way out of the drop zone but not before sending their fans on another emotional roller-coaster ride.
Lampard’s men secured a vital win at the King Power StadiumCredit: AFP
Vitalii Mykolenko’s stunning volley was good enough to win any game but the less said about the way his defence gifted Patson Daka’s leveller five minutes later the better!
Everton’s season will be decided in the next 360 minutes – on this showing it won’t be dull!
Brendan Rodgers made six changes to the side which toppled out of Europe on Thursday – not surprisingly, Frank Lampard sent out the same side which beat Chelsea.
Yet it was Rodgers’ mix and match Foxes, without Jamie Vardy, James Maddison and Harvey Barnes at the start who sprang out of the traps.
The Toffees had Yerry Mina to thank for not falling behind within three minutes after Kelechi Iheanacho sliced through the visitors’ defence with a slick through pass.
Patson Daka sprinted through and managed to shoot past Jordan Pickford.
But Mina reacted brilliantly to clear off the line with a sliding last-ditch clearance to deny Daka a certain goal.
As Everton struggled to find their feet Jonny Evans clipped the ball through for Iheanacho to run onto and his shot cannoned off Pickford’s chest.
Although Iheanacho was judged to be offside it didn’t save Seamus Coleman from a tongue lashing from Pickford, furious his skipper had allowed the striker through on his blind side.
Then, just as Everton’s loyal travelling support started to look nervously at each other, fearing this might be the start of another very long-afternoon, their team took the lead.
A scrappy goal would have done for Lampard and his blue and white army.
Instead they got an absolute worldie, as Mykolenko made sure his first goal in an Everton shirt was one he will never forget – and will certainly struggle to top!
Alex Iwobi bounced a throw-in off Anthony Gordon and then delivered a cross to the edge of the Leicester penalty area.
Mykolenko kept his eye firmly on the ball and, with a mighty swipe of his left boot he sent an absolute screamer beyond Kasper Schmeichel into the far corner.
Talk about a goal out of the blue.
Everton fans celebrated with a couple of bright blue smoke bombs but fortunately they kept them well out of range of Richarlison who was busy celebrating with his Ukrainian teammate.
Holgate scored Everton’s second as they secure a precious victoryCredit: PA
And the day got even better for the Toffees when it emerged Leeds United were already trailing to Arsenal.
Suddenly, Everton had surged out of the basement and were now 16th in the table.
But nothing ever seems to run smoothly for the blue side of Merseyside this season and it wasn’t long before fickle fate delivered another low blow.
Initially it looked as if the visitors were certain to double their lead when Abdoulaye Doucoure stole in eight yards out and fired in a low shot.
Schmeichel got enough on the ball to take the sting out of it and, as it spun towards the net he managed to claw it back just before it crept over the line.
It was a massive moment because less than 10 seconds later Leicester levelled.
Again question marks had to be asked of the Toffees brittle defence, which managed to push the self-destruct button again.
Schmeichel’s clearance was met by Iheanacho and the ball spun high into the air.
Mina and Coleman got into a fankle and the Colombian’s attempted header back to Pickford was pounced on by Daka who gratefully fired a left-footer beyond England’s No.1.
Lampard looked to the heavens for some kind of answer as to why two vastly experienced defenders could fail to communicate with each other.
Once more Everton were back into 18th place but they still had their joker to play.
After 31 minutes they used their Get Out of Jail card as they became the latest team to profit from Leicester’s Achilles heel – defending corners.
The Everton fans were in full voice as their team moved out of the relegation zoneCredit: Reuters
Or not defending them to be precise.
Just past the half hour mark Brendan Rodgers must have shuddered as Demarai Gray shaped up to take a corner on the right.
Sure enough, disaster is around every corner, it seems as the Foxes folded again at a set-piece.
Just as happened in Rome, Leicester came up short in the box.
Richarlison soared above Youri Tielemans, Wesley Fofana failed to deal with the ball in his zone and Schmeichel could only beat out the Brazilian’s header.
Ayoze Perez remained rooted to his post allowing Holgate to stop and head the ball into the waiting net.
It was the 18th goal the Foxes had conceded from a set play this season – a whopping third of all goals they have leaked.
This time Everton weren’t about to squander their lead, although they did live dangerously at times.
As always, Pickford played his part with a string of brilliant saves to Papy Mendy, clawing his long range effort out of the top corner with his trailing left glove.
Rodgers had sent on Harvey Barnes for Perez at half-time, then threw on Vardy and Ademola Lookman.
But Pickford pushed away two Barnes attempts before the winger glanced a header a fraction wide, leaving the Toffees fans to celebrate three crucial points.
Read how the action unfolded through our live blog