After producing a miracle to stay up last season, Leicester City fans are truly in dreamland right now as they top the table with over a third of the campaign gone.
With the impressive Riyad Mahrez and man of the moment Jamie Vardy leading the charge, Claudio Ranieri’s men could be starting to think that a top-four finish is a realistic aim.
So what three things have we learnt about the Italian’s Foxes after 13 games?
1) Jamie Vardy is Premier League class.
Riyad Mahrez has been magnificent for Leicester, but that says all you need to know when he hasn’t quite been the Foxes’ star of the show. In Jamie Vardy, City have the top flight’s leading scorer and a striker on the brink of becoming a record breaker. After equaling Ruud van Nistelrooy’s achievement of scoring in 10 consecutive Premier League matches, a goal against the Dutchman’s old side, Manchester United, will see the 28-year-old become the first player to score for the 11th match in a row. Isn’t it funny how people even doubted his ability to play at the level last term.
2) Claudio Ranieri hasn’t lost it.
When Pearson was replaced by Ranieri over the summer many worried for Leicester’s top flight future. After a shocking stint as Greece manager and a questionable time at Chelsea over a decade ago, the Italian was not expected to be the man to take the reins at the King Power. But the 64-year-old has done a remarkable job and has shaken off his ‘Tinkerman’ tag, keeping mostly a settled side this term. Although he hasn’t changed too much, he should be given credit for noticing that only a few tweaks were needed after the way the Foxes ended last season.
3) Team spirit and determination can prevail over money and superstars.
Under Nigel Pearson at the end of last season and Ranieri at the start of this, Leicester have proved that you don’t have to spend the most or have the biggest names to succeed. Their win over Newcastle, which saw them go top of the Premier League, was their 15th victory in their past 22 top flight outings – true title winning form. It’s great to see the likes of Vardy, Mahrez, Danny Drinkwater, Wes Morgan and Marc Albrighton, who combined cost under £3 million combined, perform to such a high level on a consistent basis. Although doubtful it will be great for football if they can maintain what they’re doing over the coming months.