The Odds for Leicester to win the Premier League title at the start of last season stood at 5000/1. The ambitions of the club were clear though sacking manager Nigel Person and replacing him with Claudio Ranieri before the start of the season. After three straight wins at the start of the campaign Leicester continued to pick up the points exceeding expectations each and every week.
By the time Leicester were preparing for the final game of the season against Chelsea, the Foxes had already won the title. Leicester were undoubtedly the deserved winners but how will they cope with the expectations this season? The odds of Leicester winning the title stands at 33/1 while the odds for relegation are around 14/1.
Leicester City 2016-17 Season Preview
Coming into the new season, Ranieri has done well to keep most of his title winning squad intact. Jamie Vardy who registered a tally of 24 goals last season snubbed an approach from Arsenal. Riyad Maherz who was arguably their best player last term has been linked to several clubs but the club has done well to fight off interests.
Perhaps the Club’s only regret heading into the new campaign was their inability to keep N’Golo Kante. The French midfielder was brilliant last season and has been signed by Chelsea for a fee of 36 million. Leicester have brought in several new players to their ranks this season. The additional reinforcements have been added with the idea to be competitive in the Champions League.
Even the supporters of the club will not be hoping for European success this season. Manchester United, Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool have all strengthened themselves during the summer and the possibility of a 2nd consecutive league title in slim. Leicester however do have the quality to make it into one of the Europa League spots.
The departure of Kante has led to the club luring another French Midfielder Nampalys Mendy to the club. Similar in stature to Kante it has to be seen whether he can have the same amount of success as his predecessor. Up front the onus will once again be on Jamie Vardy to rack up the goals. Vardy will have support from the likes of Shinji Okazaki, Leonardo Ulloa and new signing Ahmed Musa.
Leicester do have the creative strength in midfield with the likes of Mahrez, Albrighton, Demarai Gray and 19 yr old Polish midfielder Bartosz Kapustka. Along with Kante, Danny Drinkwater was one of Leicester’s key figure in midfield last season. After missing out on the England squad for the Euro’s, the English midfielder will be out to prove that he is more than a one season wonder.
Leicester had one of the most dependable defensive unit last season. Wes Morgan, Robert Huth, Christian Fuchs and Danny Simpson are expected to carry on from last season. Another of Leicester’s new signings Luis Hernandez will have a crucial role to play while youngsters Ben Chilwell and Jeff Schulpp will be waiting for a chance to impress.
For the 6th consecutive season it will be Kasper Schmeichel who’ll be guarding the Leicester goal. Schmeichel will have competition this time with new signing Ron Robert Zieler whom they’ve signed from Hannover.
Leicester City 2016-17 Season Prediction
Leicester were handed a shock 2-1 defeat on the opening day by newly promoted Hull City. A team who had just 12 senior players stunned the defending champions thanks to a late Robert Snodgrass winner. Up next Leicester will face Arsenal at home and will be hoping to pick up their first points of the season. After the visit from Arsenal they’ll face Swansea, Liverpool and Burnley in their next three league games.
Unlike many bookies and pundits who are expecting Leicester to struggle this season, we are banking on them to deliver another good season. They do have a bigger and better squad than last season and thereby will take sometime to come together. Leicester may struggle a bit at the start of the campaign but by December they’ll be somewhere in the top 10. At the end of the season the Foxes can look forward to another season of European football thanks to their 7th place finish in the table.
Verdict: – 7th Place
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Player to Watch – Leicester City 2016-17
One hit wonder. The dreaded three words that Vardy will be honored with if he doesn’t reproduce this stunning form from last season. The 29 yr old racked up a total of 24 goals last season and even broke the Premier League record for the most consecutive games scored in. Vardy did impress with the limited opportunities he had at the Euros and even got a crucial goal against Wales.
The English International will be the key to Leicester City 2016-17 campaign. 10-15 goals this term should be the minimum target for the striker but may struggle to reach his tally of last season. He described himself as the King of Leicester after subbing an approach from Arsenal, the time has come for him to prove it.
Vardy had a game to forget against the Tigers in which he missed two clear cut chances. The striker even punched himself in the face after the second miss (ouch). We hope there won’t be any more punches this season.
Betting Tips – Leicester City 2016-17
1. Premier League Champions – 67.00 (Betvictor)
We can’t see it happening for a second time running.
2. Relegation – 15.00 (Paddypower)
The bookies don’t really like Leicester do they. Who can blame them? The Foxes cost them a fortune last season and that may well be the reason for the odds on offer for their relegation. Leicester despite losing Kante do have a stronger squad than last season and should do okay this term.
3. Leicester Top Scorer
Jamie Vardy – 1.50 (Betvictor)
Ahmed Musa – 5.00 (Betvictor)
Riyad Mahrez – 5.00 (Betvictor)
Shinji Okazaki – 26.00 (Betvictor)
Jamie Vardy is the favorite to end up as Leicester’s top scorer this season. This potential challenger is 23yr old Ahmed Musa who has already racked 58 International caps with Nigeria. While not a prolific goalscorer Musa has all the assets to shine in the Premier League. Musa should provide Vardy competition to be their top scorer but Vardy should come out on top in the end.
4. Top 4 Finish – 15.00 (Paddypower)
We can’t see Leicester finishing above atleast 6 teams in the division so we’ll stay from this bet despite the odds on offer.
5. Top 6 Finish – 5.50 (Coral)
A Top 6 Finish is not something that is out of Leicester’s reach but we won’t be banking on them.
6. Top 10 Finish – 1.60 (Marathon Bet)
The odds are low for this one but it’s a winner.
7. PFA Player of the Year
Riyad Mahrez – 34.00 (StanJames.com)
Jamie Vardy – 41.00 (888 Sport)
Ahmed Musa – 81.00 (Skybet)
There still is uncertainty about Mahrez’s future. The Algerian international was simply stunning for Leicester last season with both goals and assists. A number of teams are trying to pry him away from Leicester but if he does stay we expect him to shine even if his team fails to live up to the expectations. Riyad Mahrez is a strong contender for the PFA Player of the year and the odds are good for the gamble.
Transfers In – Leicester City 2016-17
|Sl No||Position||Player||Fee – €||From|
|1||STR||Ahmed Musa||18 million||CSKA Moscow|
|2||STR||Raul Uche||_||Rayo Vallecano|
|3||MF||Bartosz Kapustka||9 million||Cracovia|
|4||MF||Nampalys Mendy||15 million||Nice|
|5||DF||Luis Hernandez||Free||Sporting Gijon|
|6||GK||Ron Robert Zieler||3.5 million||Hannover|
Leicester City – 2015/16 Stats