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Leicester City Football Club of the town of the same name have somehow managed to win the Barclays Premier League in England, despite the club’s small size. The championship was sealed on Sunday, May 2nd when Tottenham Hotspur became mathematically eliminated from the title race.
The “Foxes” were certainly underdogs coming into this season, as their finish last year in 14th position is certainly quite different than this year’s first place championship. Leicester entered the year hoping at best to stay in the league or finish mid-table, and many believed that their great form early on in the season would end at some point.
But the squad found a way to win the title, becoming only the 6th team to win the Premier League since 1992. Leicester also secured a spot in next year’s UEFA Champions League tournament by placing in the top four of this year’s domestic campaign. The club has never reached the Champions League, let alone won the top-level title, in their 132 year history.
Leicester was able to secure the title without even playing the day that they won, as Spurs tied with Chelsea by a score of 2-2 to go 7 points below with only 2 remaining games in the season. Tensions were high during the match, and the match ended with the (now) former champions Chelsea playing spoiler via Eden Hazard’s 83rd minute goal. Even if Tottenham were to win out and Leicester were to lose their final two matches, Leicester would still win the league by a point.
The team’s biggest stars, Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, will end the season with many different accolades. Both Vardy and Mahrez will almost certainly finish in the top-5 list for most goals in the campaign, with 22 and 17 respectively as of May 4th. The two players actually both won the Player of the Year Award from two different sources, with the Football Writers Association crowning Vardy and the Professional Footballers Association selecting Mahrez (according to their respective websites).
Other role players such as Danny Drinkwater, N’Golo Kante, Captain Wes Morgan and goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel will certainly share in the glory however. The team headed back to their home field, the King Power Stadium, to take on Everton before concluding their remarkable season away at Chelsea.
Leicester projected staring lineup to end the season costed about 22 million Euros for the team to purchase, a staggeringly small amount compared to the teams that they bested this season. The number, when juxtaposed to the spending habits of clubs such as Chelsea and Tottenham, just goes to show how truly spectacular Leicester’s run has been.