As many of us would be aware of Leicester City’s achievement this season but if you haven’t been paying attention to football recently, Leicester City completed a fairytale story by winning the English Premier League title for the first time in their clubs history.
Players like Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez, N’Golo Kanté and Kasper Schmeichel all got their accolades throughout the season but there were other players in that team that helped Leicester City climb from 17th last season to top of the league. Here are some of the underrated players that helped Leicester City achieve the ultimate success.
The captain was an unstoppable centre back this season for Leicester City. The team only conceded 36 goals season and it was due to his leadership and defensive actions from him and Robert Huth as the two centre backs. He also scored a couple of vital goals with one against Southampton to keep them on top of the table and then Manchester United away to salvage a draw.
Robert Huth might be getting plenty of accolade now but not many people noticed how solid he was throughout the whole season. It was the away game against Manchester City where he scored a double to give his team a 3-1 win and the belief that Leicester can do the unthinkable and win the league. His reactions, tackling, reading of the play and last gasp clearances has helped his team not concede many goals and at times, help win matches. He has been doing his business quietly and his partnership with Wes Morgan at the back had been instrumental to Leicester winning the title.
Danny Drinkwater was a midfield machine as he was important defensively but also going forward. He produced tackles when they were needed and created plays and passes to people like Vardy and Mahrez to finish. Throughout his career, Drinkwater was playing in the lower leagues of England from the championships to League One but being in the top flight of England recently, he has so far blossomed. His amazing season earned him an call into the England International squad for Euro 2016 in which he deserved.
Christian Fuchs signed at the start of the season from FC Schalke to bring experience to the Leicester City defence and he delivered week in and week out. He is the prime example of an underrated player as he did his job at left back as he intercepted the play plenty of times, defended well and at every opportunity was on the front foot to create an option going forward. His crossing and set pieces were great as that gave his teammates the best chance of scoring. Fuchs is an important cog in this team and was vital this season.
Shinji Okazaki was an absolute workhorse up front with Jamie Vardy this season. He would work so hard to regain possession for his team and then provide an option. His provided plenty of pressure to the opposition, keep control of the ball and knows where the goals are. He scored 5 goals this season included the amazing Bicycle kick against Newcastle. It may not be many goals but his workrate on the pitch was immense for the club.
It was a season to savior and cherish but the next question is can they keep the bulk of this squad as bigger clubs are circling for their services. Leicester City will be in the UEFA Champions League nest season and will be fascinating to see how they will go against the big clubs in Europe. If manager Claudio Ranerri can keep these players for next season, then they can easily fight to win back-to-back league titles.