“We screwed our chances to win the title,” said Mesut Özil recently
Although I partially share the best play-maker in the world’s opinion, I feel many are actually overlooking or ignoring the amazing accomplishment Leicester City are on the brink of sealing.
It’s true that the potential 82 points Leicester could amass are far from being a record in the Premier League and would have resulted in being crowned champions only once in the past decade, however the Foxes harbour a great record against top-half teams and got some illustrious scalps – upsetting the odds more than once.
It hurts to see that we’ve managed to beat them home and away this season and yet we’re eleven points behind Claudio Ranieri and his men (with one game in hand) but this shouldn’t justify any recrimination towards Leicester City: they’ve been better than us all season long, period.
They regularly defeated so-called smaller teams.
They didn’t show any nerve when stakes were really high.
They transformed their stadium into a fortress.
They managed to keep their best players fit and firing.
Of course it is easier when you don’t play mid-week football and no one really expects anything from you, but not many of the players’ that are currently driving Leicester City towards a sporting miracle have much top-flight football experience and could have easily crumbled under the increasing anticipation of a truly epic journey.
The likes of Morgan, Mahrez, Vardy, Albrighton, Kanté and Drinkwater could have had their heads turned to big-money moves or could have unintentionally slowed down and settle for a spot in the next Champions League – instead they kept their heads cool and preserved their hunger and humbleness.
We can talk about decisions going their way but there’s nothing new under the sun and any team winning the league in recent years benefited some favourable referring decisions.
Do they spoil Leicester City imminent triumph more than City’s or Chelsea’s? I don’t think so.
Imagine being in Leicester City position, how would you reply to those saying that we’re winning because the league is poor?
Wouldn’t you mention that the team has amassed an amazing 91 points in a year, so far?
Wouldn’t you mention the away wins at Manchester City or Chelsea as evidences of the team’s credentials?
Wouldn’t you mention the fact that the team has the best home record in the league, the player of the year (Mahrez) and the second most-prolific striker in the league (Vardy)?
Everyone would and so do Leicester City fans.
They will win the league and they deserve it more than any other Club because they’ve been more consistent than any rival.
The truth is that Leicester City are on the verge of accomplishing what Arsène Wenger has tried to achieve for years, falling short every season, although with different margins: beat the oil-funded rivals in the title race and show that medals are not directly linked to the amount of money you invest but depends on getting the right players and working on your team’s attitude, togetherness, solidarity and spirit.
No team has ever won a medal for being less crap than its rivals and title wasn’t ours to take just because we’ve been slightly less disappointing than Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United; the title was there for the team that wanted it the most and that team was Leicester City.
Thirty-something Italian, currently in Switzerland. Gooner since mid-ninties, when the Gunners defeated my hometown team, in Copenhagen. Twelve years ago I started my own blog (www.clockenditalia.com) after after some experiences with Italian websites and football magazines. Debate, don’t insult or you’re out.