Jamie Vardy three games away from history (again!)
Background Image Via: Flickr/Peter Woodentop. CC BY-SA 2.0.
There's certainly something in those Leicester waters, eh? From their historic title win in 2015/16, to Jamie Vardy going from non-league minnow to Premier League record-breaker in the space of just a few years. Now, The Foxes are at it again under Brendan Rodgers.
Leicester is Liverpool's nearest challengers this term, playing some stellar football of their own. Once again Vardy is having a party, banging in goals for fun and leading another unlikely assault on an English top-flight title. This time around it's an even more monumental task for the East Midlands outfit, though for Vardy, history could repeat itself...
Vardy would go on to score against Leicester's fierce rivals Aston Villa this weekend, making it eight games in a row in which he has struck. The 32-year-old is now just three games away from equalling the eleven-game streak which he set under Claudio Ranieri during the biggest fairytale season in English football's history. He couldn't match that, or even go one better, could he...?
First and foremost, it's worth pointing out that Vardy continues to go under the radar. For me, he should be considered amongst the best in the world. The way he scores with such regularity, without having the help that Harry Kane has at Tottenham Hotspur, or Sergio Aguero at Manchester City, makes his exploits all-the-more valuable. Then you have to remember where he came from. It wasn't *that* long ago when the Foxes #9 was working as a technician while donning out for Stocksbridge Park Steels on a part-time basis, complete with electronic fitted tag following an incident outside a pub...
Now it can't be denied that Vardy has made the most of a very favourable run of fixtures. Burnley, Southampton, Brighton and Watford are amongst those who have already stopped this incredible run. However, tougher tasks are ahead.
Daniel Farke's Norwich City visit the King Power this weekend, so I certainly wouldn't bet against Vardy making it nine in a row. However, Leicester then head North to take on Manchester City at Eastlands. Perhaps a goal could come on the counter-attack, after all, Manchester United tore Pep Guardiola's side to shreds in similar fashion... Then comes the biggie, Liverpool at home on December 26th. This could be the game in which the record is matched, though there is more on the line than a personal achievement. This could be the fixture which either fuels Leicester's title charge or sees it fizzle out completely.
If somehow, Vardy can make it that far and match his own record, the chance at beating it will come against West Ham United. Unfortunately, the Englishman won't have the King Power faithful behind him every step of the way and this one will be on the road, though you wouldn't bet against him bagging against a side that has shipped the joint fourth-most goals in the division, would you?
Whatever happens, Vardy is on course for his best-ever season in terms of goals scored. He's bagged sixteen in sixteen, just eight shy of the 24 scored in 2015/16. Record-breaker or not, the Jamie Vardy hype continues to live on. Who knows, perhaps Leicester City could somehow pull off the impossible. Phwoar, imagine if he equals his scoring record AND beats Liverpool during that game on Boxing Day. Now that would be interesting...