|One of the many new, lumbersexual, manbunning LCFC fans celebrating|
In one year’s time this group from the boondocks of the Midlands with a first team that was assembled for about $25M (Manchester City bought Belgian Kevin de Bruyne last summer for $85M) won the league Monday night after the second place Spurs blew a 2-0 league to tie Chelsea 2-2. It kind of sucks that they won without playing a game but no one is complaining. It’s really hard to find a reason to dislike a team of underdogs, seemingly egoless, with a manager, Claudio Ranieri, who is (perhaps more incredibly) an Italian who is highly regarded, laid back and eminently likable. He wasn’t even in Leicester for the victory as he had booked a trip to see his 96-year old mamma back in the Motherland. That’s Italian.
On top of that, this team was highly entertaining to watch. They played fast, counterattacking football that rendered teams asunder, and scored at will. Two weeks ago their top goal scorer Jamie Vardy was red-carded for two yellows and earned a further one-match ban for calling the referee “a fucking cunt”. Pundits opined about the detrimental effect this would have on the team’s morale and title run until they beat Swansea 4-0 and tied Manchester United away without him, effectively clinching the title without their talisman.
|Former LCFC manager Nigel Pearson had kind words for Crystal|
Palace's James McArthur last season
What’s next for Leicester? Who knows, who cares. They’ve already punched well above their weight and provided enough entertainment for years of “remember when Leicester City won it” reflectionism. It’s a good bet that even if next season’s team isn’t co-opted by the big four for big ducats (Vardy signed a new deal and it’s hard to think a few of the better players won’t leave when double/triple salaries are offered) they won’t be able to replicate the intangibles that drove them to attain the unimaginable. What is cool is that we will get to watch them play in the Champions League next season. Leicester will be playing the likes of Barcelona, Bayern, Real Madrid and Lokomotiva Zagreb. And they might keep on winning. But probably not. So long and thanks for all the fish, lads.