Leicester City best Sunderland 2-0 in The Stadium of Light and retain their seven point lead on top of the Premier League over second placed Tottenham who murdered Manchester United 3-0 at White Hart Lane to still keep their title hopes alive
With only five games left to go, realistically, there are only two teams competing for the title, but, both have never won it before. More so, one of them could’ve barely imagined for this to be the current standings having been a regular for league promotion or relegation battles. With a seven point lead over second placed Tottenham, Leicester‘s title dream has never in its history been stronger or nearer than today.
Spurs easily made up for their draw last weekend at Anfield to Liverpool with their killer performance on Sunday. Their three goals came in no more than 6 minutes. It seemed like three quick nails shot in the coffin of Manchester United‘s Champions League hopes.
It started with a neat finish from Dele Alli who didn’t seem at his best but continued to deliver, this time scoring a goal on what was his last day as a teenager. It was quickly followed by a well hit header from Toby Alderweireld and finally a sweet ground curling finish from Erik Lamela.
Having not scored in open play since Leicester met Liverpool at Anfield in February, Jamie Vardy‘s two goals showed absolutely no sign of having lost any confidence, especially in what he’s done best through the season – finding the back of the net. In turn he became the second player to cross the 20 goal mark, ironically trailing his compatriot Harry Kane by a goal. The Leicester talisman is now at 21 goals for the season which also makes the competition for the The Golden Boot a super interesting one.
Though by the end of both their games, it seemed like Spurs had put on a better overall performance, still it was no less than 3 vital points that both sides gratefully accepted. Definitely not one of the better Leicester performances but, they were still able to clinch maximum points which is more important than anything else at this point.
Leicester’s now well proven ability to win games even when they’re not at their best is a big factor for them to be able to claim the title. Even at this stage, when emotions and nerves are at their highest and the league has reached its most decisive stage, they have been able to put in how much is required to gain maximum from every game. The Manchester United way of winning leagues by holding and winning games with a goal’s advantage seems to be working for Claudio Ranieri‘s men too.
They’ve won four consecutive games in the league with only a defiant resilience of holding a single goal’s advantage to the good, and what seemed like a another 1-0 against Sunderland on Sunday, was in fact sweetly extended with a last minute goal by Vardy to make it 2-0, almost openly asserting that not only can they win and not concede, but also score more if need be.
For Tottenham, their previous best finishes in the league has been 4th place, which they’ve only recently achieved in the 09-10 and 11-12 season respectively. For them to be contending for the title at this stage has never happened before. At least not with such intensity. Still, keeping in mind their current squad, form and position, this is arguably their best chance to win their first Premier League title. Only to do this, they’ve to literally steal it away from the The Foxes, who are also in the form of their lives. Only by nature, are ‘Foxes’ ever willing to part with their prize? I guess, we’ll have to wait and see.
This is what Sunderland manger Sam Allardyce had to say about the Leicester City performance post his teams first defeat in five games. – “Each and every player is playing with more consistency than they have known in their life, It’s not two or three but all of them. They don’t seem to put a foot wrong”
Leicester and Tottenham have five games each to decide who lifts the trophy, but since Leicester are ahead by seven points already, all they’ve to do now is win three out of their next five. By doing so, they will exceed the total number of points that any other team including Tottenham will be able to reach.
81 is the magic number. Yes, it’s more than double of their 40 point target at the beginning of the season and yes the up coming fixtures aren’t going to be too easy, having to face West Ham, Swansea, Manchester United, Everton and finally Chelsea on the final day. But, it’s all they need now, maximum points from any three games and Leicester City will be champions of the 2015-16 Premier League season.
All stories said and told, it would be amazing for the football world to witness Leicester receive the trophy at Stamford Bridge from current champions Chelsea blatantly proving that teams with less money but loads of determination can win leagues too.