So what do you write when Shoot ask you to write about three things you learnt about your side during the season when your team won the Premier League…
Okay; here we go for Leicester City:
- We were good
- We were brilliant
- We were fantastic
Seriously though, in a season where our club has given hope to any other side outside the so called ‘Big Six’ that they can win the league, it’s not just what I learnt, but what other clubs can learn from us as well.
1. It’s not just about buying the best players
If you have enough money, you can go out and buy the best and most expensive players out there. It’s how Manchester City and Chelsea have conducted their transfer policy for years.
But it’s not about buying the best players, but buying the right players for your club. Being the best at one club does not make you the best at another. Likewise playing in a second-tier or below does not mean you are not good enough for anything better.
One word Vardy. But it wasn’t just Jamie Vardy. N’Golo Kante and Riyad Mahrez were bought from the lower leagues in France. Christian Fuchs was a free transfer from Germany.
Danny Drinkwater was rejected by Manchester United and what about Danny Simpson? Sold by relegated QPR. Oh and let us not forget Marc Albrighton. Shown the door by Aston Villa, signed by Leicester City, need I say more?
2. It pays to have a good scouting system
Again, the best players are well known. They are on TV week in week out, and we can all name them. Who could have named Kante and Mahrez before they signed for Leicester City?
A good scouting system unearths these gems and this is what Leicester have. Even the top clubs recognise this with Arsenal poaching our chief scout to help overhaul their own scouting system.
Fortunately for Leicester, they poached the wrong man. Whilst this system will have to be tweaked for our forthcoming Champions League campaign, where more experienced players will be needed, this will continue to be the bedrock of Leicester’s scouting policy.
Remember when David Moyes took over at Manchester United? He sacked all the back room staff and bought his own team in. This meant none of the management and coaching team knew anything about the players they had inherited.
When Leicester City finally disposed of Nigel Pearson’s services, they kept hold of coaching staff Craig Shakespeare and Steve Walsh. A master stroke.
Players knew they were coaches that knew what they could do, and new manager Claudio Ranieri had coaches he could rely on to let him know about the team he had inherited and what each player was capable of.
If I could be cheeky and add a fourth it would be never believe the papers, bookies or so called experts with none of them thinking Leicester would do any better than be involved in a relegation fight and Ranieri would be the first manager sacked!