Leicester City pulled off the unthinkable! They beat the 5,000 to 1 odds to claim the 2015/16 Premier League title and they accomplished the goal with 2 games to spare.
The championship run has many people claiming this is the most impressive underdog story in sport’s history. This isn’t having a great game or series to up-end a superior team but negotiating a 38 game schedule in one of the most competitive and highest paying professional sports leagues in the world.
The pundits and other clubs never thought this could happen but have come to pay the price for their disbelief and with the championship sealed, the trophy presented, but with 1 game left, Soccer365 takes a look at 13 key moments that helped the Foxes raid the Premier League henhouse.
The Top 13 Moments as Foxes Raid Premier League Henhouse
Leicester City 4 – 2 Sunderland
August 8, 2015
Leicester City pulled off one of the most spectacular ‘great escapes’ winning 7 of their last 9 games to avoid relegation in 2014/15 but the Foxes still had something to prove. With manager Nigel Pearson fired during the offseason and replaced by Claudio ‘the Tinkerman’ Ranieri, they were favorites to be relegated heading in to the 2015/16 campaign. Talk turns to the proverbial ‘six pointer’ toward the end of most seasons but if there ever was a 6-pointer on opening day this could have been it as Leicester was facing another team predicted to be part of the relegation discussion.
But Leicester City continued their 2014/15 end of season form and gave a glimpse into what was to come with Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez (2) finding the scoresheet along with Marc Albrighton in the win.
“I just asked my players: ‘You finished well last season and I want to see you restart at the same level,’ new manager Claudio Ranieri explained.
Leicester City 2 – 5 Arsenal
September 26, 2015
After 4 consecutive weeks of heroic comebacks, the unbeaten start to the season came to an end against Arsenal. The Gunners, in particular hat trick hero Alexis Sanchez, served as a reality check for the Foxes and dropped them to 6th on the table.
Leicester City 1 – 0 Crystal Palace
October 24, 2015
Mamma Mia, Pizzeria! Leicester City keep their first clean sheet of the season and to celebrate manager Ranieri keeps his promise to host a pizza party for the team. “The pizzas are on the gaffer. He’s been saying he wants to buy us them so I’ll make sure he does,” Vardy said after the game. The game was notable for the striker as well with him scoring his 10th goal of the campaign and celebrating by counting the 10 on his fingers. It was the first of 8 matches that ended 1-0 on the campaign.
Leicester City 1 – 1 Manchester United
November 28, 2015
Vardy sets a Premier League record by scoring in his 11th consecutive game. It appropriately came against the Red Devils as the then 28-year-old beat the old record held by United’s Ruud van Nistelrooy. “I’m very happy for Jamie,” says Ranieiri. “It’s a great achievement, not easy to do but the team made a fantastic performance.
Everton 2 – 3 Leicester City
December 19, 2015
Leicester City seal the 3-2 win over Everton with a brace from Mahrez and a winner from Shinji Okazaki. The victory insures that Leicester will be top of the table on Christmas Day a shocking turn of events considering that they were bottom of the table 1 year earlier.
Tottenham 0 – 1 Leicester City
January 13, 2016
After failing to score in 3 consecutive games – a 1-0 loss to Liverpool and 0-0 draws to Manchester City and Bournemouth, Leicester City score a 1-0 win over Tottenham which pushed them over the magical ‘40’ point target Ranieri talked about for most the season to take the attention away from any title run discussion. The fans are maybe the first to truly believe the title is a realistic goal, chanting after the final whistle “We are staying up. We’re gonna win the league!”
Aston Villa 1 – 1 Leicester City
January, 16, 2016
Aston Villa, rooted to the bottom of the table and ultimately heading for relegation, took some comfort in holding the high-flying Foxes to a 1-1 draw. The game looked to be heading toward a blowout with the visitors up 1-0 and Mahrez stepping up to the penalty spot. But Mark Bunn saved the PK and gave Villa hope. The point was good enough to send Leicester to the top of the table…a position they would never relinquish on the way to the title.
Leicester City 2 – 0 Liverpool
February 2, 2016
The dream season is creating buzz around the globe so much so that Hollywood screenwriter Adrian Butchart has visions of a big screen movie about Vardy and Co and visits the King Power Stadium and the timing could not have been better with Vardy scoring a brace against the Reds.
Leicester City 1 – 0 Southampton
April 3, 2016
With pundits still preaching about Leicester City’s imminent demise, the Foxes score their 4th consecutive 1-0 win. The 7 point cushion gives Raneiri reason to publically hint that maybe, just maybe the title is a realistic dream for his side. “We believe this is a magical season. We know next season it won’t be the same so we try to do our best. The fans must believe and be happy, but we must have our feet on the ground.”
Leicester City 4 – 0 Swansea City
April 24, 2016
With Vardy suspended the pressure was on Leicester and they responded with their biggest win of the season. Leonardo Ulloa scored a brace with Mahrez and Albrighton adding the other goals.
Manchester United 1 – 1 Leicester City
May 1, 2016
3 points was all that separated Leicester City from the title but the 13-time Premier League champions, Manchester United, made sure they did not hand the trophy to the Foxes. The result meant Leicester City had to wait another week…or did they?
Chelsea 2 – 2 Tottenham
May 2, 2016
Tottenham, the only other title chasers left in the race, dropped 2 points in their previous match against West Brom but appeared to be ready to take the title race to the final games of the season after jumping to a 2-0 advantage over the Blues. But Chelsea desperately wanted to end the hopes of their rivals fought back to earn a 2-2 draw and end Tottenham’s championship dreams. Ironically it was Eden Hazard’s goal that put the final nail in Tottenham’s coffin and handed Leicester the title. The Belgian midfielder scored the goal that secured the 2014/15 title for Chelsea last year.
Leicester City 3 – 1 Everton
May 7, 2016
With the title race over all that was left for Leicester to do was to pick up the trophy after their final home match of the season against Everton. The Foxes gave fans a reason to celebrate with a 3-1 win over the Toffees. With the final whistle the celebration began in earnest with Wes Morgan lifting the Premier League title in front of family and the King Power fans.
Leicester City 2015/16 Premier League Champions gear is available at World Soccer Shop.