Leicester City started the 2015 – 16 Premier League campaign with the hope of staying in the English top flight by the end of the season. With 13 games still to go, they have already been declared the favorites to clinch the league title.
Since their inception in 1884, the Foxes have never topped the English top flight table. After beating Manchester City at the Etihad on Saturday, Claudio Ranieri’s men are five points clear at the top of the table.
Robert Huth, who scored a brace, impressed at both ends of the pitch and Riyad Mahrez netted a fantastic goal in the 3 – 1 win over Pellegrini’s City. Mahrez’s yet another brilliant display will only strengthen his claim at the Player of the Year award.
In the post-match interview, Claudio Ranieri dismissed suggestions Leicester are title favourites.
“I don’t want to think about if we win,” Ranieri said. “My mind goes over seven days and the next game against Arsenal, a tough match with fantastic players.
“But we are alive, and we want to fight. We know it’s a crazy league, and we have to try. But there are some big teams who have to win.
“We enjoy it, and the fans must continue to dream.”
“We have to think about only the Premier League and how we can fight in it,” he added. “Those who play in the other competitions spend a lot of energy and travel a lot, and that’s not easy. That’s a little advantage, but we have to concentrate.”
“I hope my players didn’t feel pressure because our pressure was to save the team from relegation,” he added. “We did that, and now we have to enjoy and do our best, step by step.”
Chelsea played host to Van Gaal’s Manchester United on Sunday. The Red Devils took the lead at the hour mark courtesy of a spectacular finish from Jesse Lingard. The Blues canceled out the lead in the injury time breaking hearts of United faithful. Diego Costa scored his ninth league goal for the West Londoners in the 1 – 1 stalemate.
Arsenal picked up three points with a 2 – 0 win over Bournemouth at the weekend. Mesut Ozil and Oxlade-Chamberlain scored one each for the Gunners at Dean Court. The North Londoners have climbed up to the third spot.
Not many would have expected to find Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham among the genuine title contenders at this point of the season. Spurs are ahead of their arch rivals Arsenal because of their superior goal difference, but they remain five points far from the league leaders. Spurs defeated Watford 1 – 0 at White Hart Lane courtesy of Trippier’s 64th-minute winner.
Liverpool has slipped to the ninth spot in the Premier League table after the 2 – 2 draw against Sunderland at the weekend. In the absence of Jurgen Klopp, the Reds gave away a two-goal lead to drop two points in the later stages of the game. Their Merseyside rivals Everton have leapfrogged them after a 3 – 0 win over Stoke City on Saturday.
Aston Villa grabbed a 2 – 0 win over Norwich, but they still have a long way to go in order to climb out of the relegation pit. They are eight points behind Newcastle, who are currently 17th in the league table. They still have plenty of time on their hands, and the task is quite achievable if they maintain their form of late.