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Reigning champions Leicester City threatened with relegation

Thursday 9th February 2017
This time last season, everything was different for Leicester City. Fans were rubbing their eyes as if things were real for the club because "The Foxes" were top of the Premier League. Even after every win, pundits and football fans around the world still denied that Leicester would "win the league".

Claudio Ranieri's squad were performing better than any team in the league and football fans from the neutral point of view loved to see this. It was a shock for everybody especially knowing that Leicester had only been promoted from the Championship in 2015.

Ranieri had brought in players such as N'golo Kante, Shinji Okazaki, Robert Huth, Christian Fuchs and Demarai Gray. This was to add strength to the side with players already in the squad like Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez, Leonardo Ulloa and Kasper Schmeichel to name a few.
The 2015-16 season was a historical one not just for Leicester City but for football in general. Vardy and Mahrez totalled an astonishing 41 league goals between them. Vardy even broke a Premier League record by scoring in 11 consecutive games.

Leicester had only lost three games all season, two of them came at the hands of Arsenal - doing the double over them. They also lost to Liverpool at Anfield. After 38 games played they won 23 drew 12 and lost just 3; winning the league on 81 points was a news sensation across the globe. Millions of people tuned in on their TV's to watch the victory parade. Hundreds of thousands of people flocked to the city to witness the delightful event in person, too.

However, this season isn't going as well as last time around. With Kante leaving for Chelsea, was he such a key part of the Leicester team? A lot of people seem to say so but one player can't be the difference in winning the league and fighting a relegation battle, can it?

We've also got to take into account that some players are not playing to their abilities like they did last season. Leicester have only won 5 games so far in 2016/17 - a dramatic change.

Despite bad form in the Premier League, with winning the league last season they qualified for Champions League football. They entered into the group stage and drew up against Club Brugge, Copenhagen and Porto. Leicester City won their group with four wins a draw and a loss, and The Foxes advanced to the round of 16. They are scheduled to play Sevilla over two legs.

Back to the Premiership and Leicester are just one point above the drop. This weekend they will be facing Swansea away from home, who are just one place below them. This fixture will prove to be a key part of the season for Ranieri's men, and if they don't get a result in Wales, there will be some major questions asked regarding Premier League survival.

Many will wonder what has happened to Leicester, but it's more of a case of a missing piece to a jigsaw. Last season everything just seemed to click into place and it all worked out. This season there is a lack of dynamism and quality which could prove to be fatal for Leicester's future in the Premiership.

Jamie Kynaston

For my sins, I'm a season ticket holder at Stoke City, I have been proud to watch them for over 20 years. I follow most of the UK leagues and the major European ones too, and I've been told that I talk way too much about football.


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