Leicester City: More Sustainable and Better Prepared Compared to Premier League Winners

Leicester Premier League
Spread the love

When Leicester City shocked the world by winning the Premier League in 2016, many were rightfully quick to label them a flash in the pan; a side that, against all odds, did the impossible. 

Those who made that prediction were proven right when the Foxes struggled to a mediocre mid-table finish after an early-season relegation scrap.

Ranieri’s side were, indeed, a once in a lifetime, one season spectacle to admire. A transitional period back to where many believed those at the King Power belonged then followed; Leicester failed to build on a title-winning campaign and remained a ‘flash in the pan’.

Five years later, and things are different under Brendan Rodgers. They are no longer a one-season flash, but a long-lasting spark lighting up the Premier League. 

Unlike the famous title-winners, this Leicester side are far more sustainable, have greater squad depth, and are, therefore, better prepared for the future.

Leicester: More Sustainable and Better Prepared for the Future

Permanent Place in Premier League Top Six for Leicester

Last season, when Brendan Rodgers took Leicester City to within touching distance of the top four, many rightfully hailed it as a superb achievement. But, the fact is, it could have been so much more; as it turns out, that top-six finish was only a sign of what was to come.

Post lockdown struggle due to a combined burnout from goalscorer Jamie Vardy and the team as a whole led to an untimely collapse, but, crucially, a lesson learnt. 

Last time around, without Vardy’s goals, the Foxes’ threat in front of goal seemed non-existent. It became a case of, take Vardy out of the game, and you take away the three points for Leicester. 
[pickup_prop id=”4013″]
A top team stands out when several players step up to take responsibility instead of relying on one source. When Leicester’s source ran dry, so did their class last season. 

One summer transfer window later, however, and when that source of goals is missing, Rodgers has the insurance policy of others who can step up to the plate. Harvey Barnes and James Maddison are prominent examples. 

Barnes netted seven goals last season. This season, he is already in double figures with 11. James Maddison was involved in 11 goals last campaign. This time around, he has already had an involvement in 20. The difference in quality is there for all to see. 

Gone are the days of solely relying on Vardy to produce; arrived are the days of a squad capable of securing a permanent place in the top six.

Leicester Winning Ugly in the Premier League

As previously alluded to, last season, it seemed as though only a perfect performance would take Leicester to three points, and no team can play to that level every week. 

The top teams; the sides who are qualifying for the Champions League, pick up the ability to win ugly; something Rodgers’ side have crucially learnt this season. 

The game against Liverpool is a prime example. For the most part, Liverpool dominated and took a deserved lead. Yet, the Leicester heads did not drop, and they hung on for their chance- as every top team does. And, when it came, they took it with the ruthlessness worthy of Champions League qualification.

For 75 minutes, they looked like a defeated side. As the fulltime whistle sounded, they were celebrating after coming away with a 3-1 victory. The performance wasn’t necessarily worthy of the result, but three points on the board in pursuit of a Champions League place is all that matters.

Mix of Experience and Youth

With Jamie Vardy leading the line alongside fresher talents such as Harvey Barnes, and Jonny Evans commanding the backline next to the youthful, but always impressive, Wesely Fofana, the balance between youth and experience has never been more apparent at the King Power.

Even as Caglar Soyuncu and Ricardo Pereira were struck with the injury bug, talents such as James Justin emerged as one of the key men this season.

So much has been made of other sides and their injury issues. Leicester, too, have racked up a lengthy list, but you wouldn’t know it. Rodgers has turned to his squad which is now worthy of the biggest stages, and it has stepped up. 

And it will only continue to do so. Brendan Rodgers has built a side sustainable for not only a flash in the pan but an everlasting spark.

Main Photo
Embed from Getty Images