Any report read on Leicester City before the season started will have no doubt made note of their so called “nightmare start”, and perhaps rightly so. Hosting Everton and Manchester United was broken up with visits to the Emirates, Stamford Bridge and the Britannia. One could have forgiven Leicester for coming out of this period at the foot of the table, and realistically being pointless at this stage wasn’t inconceivable. Instead, The Foxes swept United aside in a thrilling 5-3 encounter this weekend to push them to seventh in the table on eight points, sitting prettily above United, Liverpool and Tottenham, to name a few.
Leicester has built on their strong Championship squad this summer in quite an understated fashion. Matthew Upson, Marc Albrighton and Esteban Cambiasso were all brought in on free transfers, giving top level experience to an exciting squad of players. £7m was spent on Brighton forward Leonardo Ulloa, the biggest fee the Foxes spent this summer, and there were some doubts over whether he was capable of making the step up to Premier League standard. With five goals in five appearances, the Argentine has more than answered these questions. In the opening fixtures, he has proven the finishing touch to Leicester’s smart and swift attacking play and with Jamie Vardy and David Nugent reaching the peak of their careers, Leicester’s attack looks to continue to threaten.
With few injury concerns and an emphatic start to the season for Nigel Pearson’s men, it’s hard not to get wrapped up in the fairytale. Though the results have been good, Leicester have conceded a worrying eight goals in their first five outings and the 1-0 loss to Shrewsbury Town in the Capital One Cup does highlight the lack of squad depth present in the East Midland outfit. This may well show later on in Leicester’s Premier League campaign, to their detriment.
These concerns are for the future, though. Pearson has not only got results for his side, but he has done so in an exciting and bold fashion, one that a promoted side rarely adopts successfully when making the transition to Premier League football. The King Power stadium is buzzing with excitement at the moment, and rightly so. If Leicester fans are able to keep their eyes on the true goal of this season – Premier League survival – then we can see these opening fixtures as a huge step towards that goal – picking up a number of points where they cannot rightly be expected. It is when Leicester fans dream of top half finishes and further success that they may see them end up disappointed in the long run. This start is wonderful for the Foxes, but it is just a start. The hard work will need to continue through patches that aren’t nearly as fruitful as this one, and that is when we will see the true capabilities of this Leicester City squad.
De Laet, Morgan, Moore, Konchesky
Mahrez, Drinkwater, Cambiasso, Schlupp
Season rating: 5 stars
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