One year ago today- in a Monday evening match Tottenham blew a 2-0 lead at Chelsea- the game ended in a 2-2 draw. That was all that was needed to make Leicester City F.C. the Premier League Champions for 2015-16. One of the greatest stories in sports history had been achieved.
Leicester City started the season at 5000-1 to win the title. Over the summer when they hired veteran manager Claudio Ranieri, the pundits were all saying it was a terrible hire and he’d be the first manager sacked during the season. The Leicester team was a team of misfits and rejects. Players the so called ‘big teams’ either had no interest in or had been given trials with and found wanting.
I’ve written about this a few months ago and I won’t go over it again. The story has been well covered. Around Thanksgiving that season they started to become a story. No one yet believed it but it was starting to become interesting. It was a great thrill as a sports fan- looking forward to their games each week, can they continue this? They did.
There is no American equivalent to what Leicester City did last season. None. In American sports for example the Cleveland Browns in the NFL- the worst franchise, the odds on them winning the Super Bowl this year will be around 200-1. Their isn’t as much difference in the lowly Browns and the Patriots as their was between Leicester City and the Chelsea’s and Manchester United’s of the Premier League world. This just didn’t happen in the Premier League. The “Big” clubs who spent all the money ALWAYS win. This season as the season enters its final weeks Chelsea is back on top 4 points ahead of Tottenham. Tottenham has never won the Premier League but make no mistake they are a big team. Leicester City is 11th out of 20 this season. At 40 points they are aren’t even halfway to Chelsea’s league leading 81. The great Ranieri was fired several months ago.
Whoever wins this years title, Chelsea or Tottenham- no one but their fans is going to consider this season anything special. Ho- hum. What Leicester City did is going to be marveled at as long as football is being played. I certainly don’t expect to see anything like it again. A year ago today- it feels like yesterday.