Leicester City have got off to a red-hot start in the Premier League. Manager Brendan Rodgers’ team is third in the league with eight points from 12 possible. Following Leicester City’s matchday 4 win over Bournemouth, a 3-1 result, expectations of a top 4 finish increased. Odds on Leicester City to win the Premier League have narrowed with the Foxes having the seventh-best odds to lift the title.
But the Leicester City fans and pundits who have praised Rodgers’ team need to pump the brakes. Leicester City are yet to play at team in the Premier League’s top nine. Yes, the cliche of ‘you can only beat the teams put in front of you’ comes to mind. Yet, the fact is, the season will get more difficult for Leicester City.
The Foxes have played Wolverhampton Wanderers (draw), Chelsea (draw), Sheffield United (win), and Bournemouth (win). After four matchdays those teams sit 10th through 17th.
While Leicester City have collected eight points in those matches, the usual top 6 have been abysmal. Only Liverpool and Manchester City have held up their reputations as top 6 teams. Arsenal and Tottenham continued to drop points over the weekend. The Gunners have seven points from 12 and Spurs are stuck on five. Anyone thinking Mauricio Pochettino’s team would challenge for the title were wrong. A Champions League Final hangover lingers in north London.
Chelsea are awful and according to Sheffield United fans at Stamford Bridge over the weekend, are just a s*** Derby County. Lampard’s appointment as Chelsea boss came too soon. He is learning on the job which is something no manager at a major club has the luxury to do.
Manchester United are just as bad and poorly assembled. Daniel James is the only player that can be counted on to score goals. Marcus Rashford must prove himself, but so far, he is not a 15 goal a Premier League season player.
The failings of those four teams play into Rodgers’ and Leicester City’s hands. As magical as Leicester City’s Premier League title win was in 2015-16, it must be remembered that as good as they were, the rest of the traditional top 6 were bad.
Did we forget that season saw Arsenal finish second and 10 points behind the Foxes? Tottenham Hotspur finished third and Manchester City fourth.
Manchester United ended the 2015-16 season in fifth place, three positions better than Liverpool, who finished in eighth. Both Southampton and West Ham finished higher than the Reds.
What about the previous season’s champions, Chelsea? Remarkably, Chelsea ended the season 10th, 31 points behind Leicester City.
The failings of those teams enabled Leicester City to seize their opportunities under Claudio Ranieri. This season, Leicester City could do the same thing under Rodgers.
Right now, Leicester City are not the only team looking to crash the top 4. Another ex-Liverpool manager has his team just one point behind Leicester City. Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace have collected seven points from eight possible. Everton and West Ham are also on seven points.
This season’s Premier League looks wide-open, at least those places behind Liverpool and Manchester City. Will Leicester City finish in the top 4? They look good so far, but there is a long way to go.