It is truly incredible that when Liverpool travel to face the Premier League leaders they will be travelling to Leicester City. It would have been incredible if we were in October or November but we’re not. It’s February, all 20 teams have played 23 games and Leicester City are top by three points.
In what has been a remarkable season where the champions and their manager imploded, Klopp came to Liverpool and the top scorer played non-league five years ago, Leicester City have been the story. Bottom of the table on Christmas Day in 2014 to top of the table on Christmas Day 2015, we may never see something like this again.
What remains is to see how far Leicester can go. They have 15 games left and a huge week ahead of them. First they have Liverpool, who are one of only two teams to beat them in the league this season, and then they have Manchester City on Saturday. It could be a defining week in their season.
Well I want Liverpool to batter Leicester City tonight. Actually, I want Liverpool to eviscerate them. I want Liverpool to shatter their confidence, to knock them down and ensure that by the time they play City they are too weak to stand up so they can be battered again.
That may sound as if I have something against Leicester. Trust me, before this season I could not have cared less about them. But it is what they are doing this season that is annoying me, is the reason I’m grinding my teeth, that’s the reason I want to see Leicester City destroyed tonight.
Leicester can’t win the league. They just can’t.
I’m 18 years old. In my lifetime I have seen four teams win the league. Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City. I didn’t want them to win the league either and it made my sick to the stomach to watch United and City pip us to the title in 2009 and 2014. It was just generally accepted however that two of them effectively bought the league and that the other two were big clubs, like us, and that winning titles is just what big clubs do.
So I didn’t feel too bad about that. What I can’t stand, however, is watching football and supporting football for almost 13 years, spending every living moment hoping and dreaming that Liverpool would one day win the league, only to see Leicester City do it first.
Even as I’m writing this I can imagine the fume this could potentially generate. A Liverpool supporter who wants to see Manchester City or Arsenal win the league?! Well I don’t want them to win the league. But I could live with it. Imagining Wes Morgan lifting the Premier League on the other hand? No thank you.
Sure I can see the argument as to why a neutral football fan, if there is such a thing, would say that Leicester winning the league would be the greatest thing to possibly ever happen in the Premier League. It shows that you don’t have to spend hundreds of millions of pounds to win, it shows smaller clubs like Everton that anything is possible, that modern day football is still competitive, fair and fun.
For years Leicester’s season will encourage football fans to dream of ‘what if ‘. It keeps alive that belief of ‘this could be our year’ that all supporters feel on opening day. It’s romantic. The story of Jamie Vardy is romantic, it’s rags to riches and it’s what football is all about.
But romance is dead. It’s dead and it has been ever since the two nights that changed everything; April 27th and May 5th 2014. They said that Steven Gerrard was destined to win the league that season with Liverpool. It was meant to be. But it wasn’t.
Liverpool’s rise from 7th to title contenders was an incredible story. It changed the way I think about football and genuinely convinced me that anything is possible when you can dream. Leicester City encapsulate that. Enjoy the top 4, enjoy the Champions League but don’t you dare touch Liverpool’s Premier League title. Only one team gets to become the sixth club to win the Premier League and it’s going to be us.
We are coming back.