Leicester were denied a morale-boosting win as Evan Ferguson snatched a point for Brighton with a late header in an entertaining 2-2 draw at the King Power Stadium on Saturday.
Kaoru Mitoma cut inside and curled home a beauty to fire the Seagulls into the lead, but Marc Albrighton levelled by steering in at the near post after some chaotic defending from the visitors.
The Foxes went ahead in the second half when the unmarked Barnes struck, beating Robert Sanchez with a powerful strike from close range.
However, Brighton pressed and took home a share of the spoils when Ferguson rose highest to head in his third league goal of the season.
Jan Paul van Hecke went close early on during his full Premier League debut, but a slight touch from the flapping Danny Ward diverted the ball’s path and Van Hecke ended up clearing the bar inside the six-yard box.
Brighton soon went ahead as the electric Mitoma continued his brilliant recent form. The Japan international collected Pervis Estupinan’s pass and breezed infield from the left, whipping a right-footed curler into the top corner.
Dennis Praet and Adam Lallana both succumbed to injuries during the first half but it was Foxes substitute Albrighton who made the desired impact from the bench as the 2015/16 title winner drew his side level.
Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall played in Barnes and both the winger and Youri Tielemans saw shots blocked in quick succession before it fell to Albrighton, who cooly equalised just three minutes after coming off the bench for his first league goal since August 2021.
Brighton looked for a penalty when Luke Thomas collided with Danny Welbeck only to be denied before Solly March skied a Mitoma pull-back near the penalty spot.
Leicester capitalised against the run of play to take the lead. A Thomas flick-on found its way to Barnes, who escape the attention of Van Hecke to smash Brendan Rodgers’ side into the lead.
Roberto De Zerbi’s visitors nearly got back on terms as Ward awkwardly kneed away Alexis Mac Allister’s long range hit, but he was given little hope when Brighton replacement Ferguson brought his side level.
The tall Irish striker connected brilliantly with Estupinan’s cross, glancing his header across Ward and in off the post in the 88th minute.
James Maddison threatened a grandstand finish while standing over a few free kicks but a fifth goal could not be found, arresting Leicester’s slump and stunting Brighton’s recent winnin form.
GK: Danny Ward (6); RB: Timothy Castagne (7), CB: Daniel Amartey (6), CB: Wout Faes (6), LB: Luke Thomas (6); RM: Dennis Praet (6), CM: Youri Tielemans (7), CM: Nampalys Mendy (7), LM: Harvey Barnes (7); AM: Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall (7); ST: Jamie Vardy (6).
SUBS: Marc Albrighton (7), James Maddison (6), Patson Daka (N/A).
GK: Robert Sanchez (5); RB: Pascal Gross (6), CB: Jan Paul van Hecke (7), CB: Lewis Dunk (7), LB: Pervis Estupinan (8); CM: Moises Caicedo (7), CM: Alexis Mac Allister (6); RM: Solly March (7), AM: Adam Lallana (6), LM: Kaoru Mitoma (8); ST: Danny Welbeck (6).
SUBS: Joel Veltman (7), Evan Ferguson (7), Tariq Lamptey (6).