Leicester City Can Remain In Champions League Dreamland


The dream for Leicester City continues as they are poised to embark on their first campaign in the Champions League.

Claudio Ranieri’s men are still revelling in their Premier League triumph last season, and will enter the prestigious competition as England’s champions.

The Foxes were part of Pot One due to their success in the top flight, keeping them away from Barcelona and Bayern Munich in the group draw.

Although they missed out on facing the more glamorous sides, Leicester have a solid chance to progress after being presented with the challenges of FC Porto, Club Brugge and Copenhagen. As a result, the club are being backed in the latest Bet365 Champions League betting odds at 11/8 to win Group E and advance to the knockout stage of the tournament.

Reports suggested that Leicester were in danger of losing their key trio of stars Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez and N’Golo Kante that were essential in securing the title last season. Arsenal were interested in both Vardy and Mahrez, but both opted to remain at the King Power Stadium. However, Kante was lured away by Chelsea in a £32m deal, leaving a sizable hole in the club’s midfield where the Frenchman starred last season.

The Foxes have attempted to plug the gap by signing Nampalys Mendy from Nice, while they have boosted their firepower to ease the pressure on Vardy and Mahrez with the additions of Ahmed Musa and Islam Slimani. They broke their transfer record three times over the summer, ending the window with the signing of Slimani for a fee in the region of £30m. The money spent shows how far the Foxes have progressed in one year, and also gives them hope of competing in the Premier League and in Europe.

English teams have struggled in the Champions League of late, with Manchester City’s foray into the semi-finals of the tournament a rare bright spot. Leicester’s energy was infectious in the top flight last term, and using a similar approach could well humble their opponents on the continent. Vardy’s pace will be a weapon against every team the Foxes will face, while the skill and guile of Mahrez in the final third will strike fear into defenders.

Musa and Slimani will ask further problems of teams facing Ranieri’s men, with the Algerian’s physical presence offering a new dimension and he also has experience in the Champions League with two seasons under his belt with Sporting.

Robert Huth and Christian Fuchs also have knowledge of the rigours their side will face in the Champions League having played in the tournament in their spells at Chelsea and Schalke 04 respectively.

That will be a vital tool for Ranieri to have their experience on the pitch to support the likes of Danny Drinkwater, Vardy and Mahrez, who will be presented with this new challenge.

The wily Italian boss will certainly put his team in the best situations possible having racked up numerous European matches in his time in Spain, Italy and in England with Chelsea. Therefore Leicester should be in with an excellent chance of making another huge statement this season, with the ability to push on into the latter stages of the competition.

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