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First Team

Premier League Preview: Leicester City

Last year's FA Cup opponents become league adversaries

25 June 2021

In the past two seasons, second tier Brentford have been eliminated by Leicester City in the Fourth Round of the Emirates FA Cup. This season, City come to town as top-flight equals.

2020/21 REPORT

League Position: 5th

Top League Goalscorer: Jamie Vardy (15)

Stadium: King Power Stadium, Filbert Way, Leicester, LE2 7FL

Capacity: 32,300

The Foxes had a season to remember as they won the Emirates FA Cup for the first time in club history. They beat Stoke, Brentford, Brighton, Manchester United and Southampton on the way to the Final at Wembley. There, a wonderful strike from Youri Tielemans saw them overcome Chelsea in front of 21,000 fans.

Their league campaign was equally impressive, despite not going all the way to the title. From day one, City didn't drop out of the top four until May 2021. A defeat to Chelsea and then to Spurs on the last day of the season saw them drop into fifth at the last moment. That means another season in the UEFA Europa League awaits.

Last term's European campaign saw them drawn in a group with Porto, Zorya Luhansk and AEK Athens. Winning the group, they couldn't get beyond Slavia Prague in the Round of 32, losing 2-0 on aggregate.

Their Carabao Cup campaign was only single game long, Arsenal beating them 2-0 in the Third Round.

At Euro 2020, they have six players. First choice keeper Kasper Schmeichel is representing Denmark while backup goalie Danny Ward is playing for Wales. They'll meet each other in the Last 16 of the tournament tomorrow night. Turkey's Caglar Soyuncu has already been eliminated from Group A, while there are three players in the Belgium squad; Timothy Castagne, Dennis Praet and Youri Tielemans. Castagne will play no part in the Last 16 game with Portugal on Sunday, as he was injured in the group stage.

THE MANAGER

Brendan Rodgers was a defender in his playing days, starting at Ballymena United before his career was ended by injury. A genetic knee condition forced him to retire at 20 years old.

Leicester City Manager.jpg

He began his coaching career at Reading, becoming Academy Director. He played non-league football at Newport and Newbury Town, while also travelling around Europe to learn his trade. He joined the staff of Jose Mourinho at Chelsea in 2004, being named Youth Manager before a promotion to Reserve Manager.

He became Watford manager in 2008 until taking over at Reading. He later joined Swansea City, leading them to promotion to the top-flight. He signed for Liverpool in 2012, taking them to second place in the Premier League before he was dismissed and joined Celtic. There, he took them to an undefeated season and won back-to-back trebles. Leicester City brought him to the club in February 2019.

LAST MEETING

A snowy West London greeted Leicester in our last meeting. It was Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round day, where The Bees lost 3-1 to The Foxes. Mads Bech Sorensen had opened the scoring after only seven minutes. Cengiz Under scored the leveller in the second half before goals from Youri Tielemans and James Maddison secured a victory for the away side.

Bees:Daniels; Roerslev, Pinnock, Sorensen, Stevens; Zamburek (Haygarth 84), Janelt (Jensen 64), Ghoddos (Gilbert 79); Canos (Pressley 64), Forss, Fosu

Leicester: Ward; Pereira (Castagne 69), Amartey, Soyuncu, Thomas; Mendy (Ndidi 70), Tielemans; Under (Iheanacho 76), Maddison, Barnes; Perez (Albrighton 81)


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