By: Matthew Terry
- Leicester City finds itself back in the FL Championship
The magical 2015-16 run of Leicester City is a tale that will be told for years to come. The story of how Claudio Ranieri helped turn the Foxes from perennial relegation candidates to champions of England is one that was once unheard of and absurd to think about, and eight months later, it’s still hard to believe. What makes it seem so unreal is the fact that this year, Leicester has fallen back to where it was before they were named champions. The Foxes currently find themselves in 17th place with 21 points, just two points ahead of last place Sunderland. Vardy can’t seem to find the net like he could last year, and the Foxes are missing midfielder N’Golo Kante badly, as Kante currently finds himself in Player of the Year conversation at current table-leaders Chelsea. With Leicester failing to score a PL goal so far this year (last goal coming against West Ham on Dec. 31), it looks like Leicester won’t be in the Premier League for much longer
- Romelu Lukaku wins the Golden Boot
The highest scorer of anyone not in the Top Six (Chelsea, Man City, Spurs, Arsenal, Liverpool, Man U), Romelu Lukaku (16 goals) has been having another outstanding season with the Toffees. After an absolutely awe-inspiring performance against AFC Bournemouth when Lukaku put FOUR goals into the back of the net. With 65% of his shots on target, plus a lack of other scoring options at Everton, it’s only a matter of time before Lukaku overtakes Alexis Sanchez of Arsenal, whose 17 goals lead the Premier League.
- Liverpool, Man City miss out on Champions League
The race for the Top 4 this season will be a tight one to watch this season, with only Chelsea really guaranteed a spot in CL next season. Manchester City, Tottenham, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United all sit within four points of each other for the remaining three Champions League spots, meaning the race to secure those spots will be as tight as ever. This may seem like the easy choice to make, but with the way these teams are playing currently, these two are my picks to miss. Manchester United has been absolutely on a roll lately, closing the gap on fifth place in their current 16-game unbeaten streak, Tottenham has been nearly unbeatable when they play their 3-4-3 formation (the same one they used to beat Chelsea, but also one they’ve been unable to use with centerback Jan Vertonghen out), and Arsenal will finish in fourth. Liverpool have been dreadful in their past few games, although they looked much better in their 2-0 victory over Spurs in Anfield, and Manchester City was just starting to figure things out when star attacker Gabriel Jesus went down for possibly the season against Bournemouth. Any of these five teams can make Champions League, so either way this falls, we’re in for a fun face.
And, as always…