LEICESTER CITY V MANCHESTER UNITED
Sunday July 26th 4pm – Sky Sports Main Event (coverage starts at 3pm)
Preview by Paul Weston
It all comes down to the wire on the last game of the season- a home game at the King Power against Manchester United. There have been so many permutations but, following Wednesday night’s matches, both of which went in City’s favour, it is now quite straightforward.
All City have to do is win against Manchester United (simples!) and a guaranteed Champions League spot is the prize. However, if Chelsea lose to Wolves (a distinct possibility given Wolves’ form) then a draw against Manchester United would be sufficient. There are a few other possibilities which are very remote that are not worth considering.
If you were a glass half empty person you might think that the Foxes have no chance and let’s face it, the last few matches have proved that we have nowhere near a good enough squad to compete in the Premiership and the Champions League.
At the time of writing I have assumed that Chilwell, Maddison, Fuchs and Albrighton are injured so, with Soyuncu suspended, that leaves us dependant on a 36 year old in defence and a 19 year old rookie youngster at left back. That leaves Rodgers with few options so team selection I expect is likely to be the same as the match against Spurs unless Rodgers is more pragmatic.
Manchester United looked sluggish against West Ham but surely their forwards will raise their game. They will relish the chance of breaking from defence into attack quickly, similar to how Spurs picked the weaknesses in our defence even though City had 24 shots at the other end with no result.
The glass half empty conclusion is that Manchester United will probably score early and then comfortably hold off City’s efforts, perhaps ending in a 2-0 victory. City then end up a gallant fifth and with a Europa League spot. It will be disappointing given our fantastic early form but most City fans would probably have taken this at the beginning of the season
However, if you a glass half full person (as I am) there is always another scenario even though form favours Manchester United. Vardy is leading the race for the Golden Boot and what better time to slam in two goals against Manchester United and Harry Maguire on the last match of the season in front of the TV cameras.
His form has been improving all the time since lockdown and, if only his colleagues could create chances for him, you feel that he is due a goal. He always plays well against Manchester United, whose defence is not their strength. City will be at the King Power and, although home form is different without crowds, perhaps familiar surroundings will help.
The Foxes resolve has strengthened since the shambolic, embarrassing and shocking performance against Bournemouth and they know their fans will expect a committed performance. The other possibility, however unlikely, is that the pressure gets to Manchester United and that they do not play to their potential. Let’s face it- all the pundits will expect a “big team” like Manchester United to beat City. Wouldn’t it be just great if we could prove them wrong with a 2-1 victory?
So sit back and enjoy the ride on Sunday. Come on you Foxes!
The views expressed in this report are the opinions of the Trust member nominated to file the report only and do not represent the views of the Foxes Trust organisation