Leicester’s key fixtures in Premier League relegation battle
Brendan Rodgers said ahead of Leicester’s defeat to Chelsea that keeping the Foxes in the Premier League this season would go down as one of the greatest achievements of his career.
That’s a sad indictment of the 2015/16 miracle-workers who seemed poised to break into the so-called ‘Big Six’ not so long ago as they pursued a Champions League berth.
Public opinion is beginning to turn against the manager who has overseen four league defeats on the bounce. Leicester’s dire run of form has thrust them back into trouble in the context of relegation, and they’ve got some huge games coming up in their fight to stay up.
Crystal Palace vs Leicester
The international break gives Rodgers and Leicester the chance to reset (again), and reset they must because a huge game awaits upon their return to action.
Crystal Palace, too, are in dismal form and will equally be looking forward to the break. Both sides will be in desperate search of three points to ignite their bid for survival.
Leicester vs Bournemouth
The King Power hasn’t quite been the unified amphitheatre that inspired the Foxes while they were at their best under Rodgers. Discontent is starting to manifest in the stands, but it’s unlikely that the club will opt for a manegerial switch now.
Rodgers will circle this contest against Bournemouth as a season-defining one. The Cherries have developed into a pesky side to play against, and they’re well-equipped to expose Leicester’s vulnerabilities.
Leicester vs Wolves
Another relegation six-pointer at the King Power. Julen Lopetegui has returned Wolves to efficient functionality, and it’d be a surprise to see them in trouble come the end of the season.
Their away from is indifferent (ten points from 14 games), but Leicester’s home record is the second-worst in the division. Only Southampton (nine) have accumulated fewer points on home soil than the Foxes (12) this season.
Leeds vs Leicester
This looks like a tricky game for Leicester on paper. While the Foxes’ away record isn’t woeful, Leeds will be well up for this contest.
It’ll be a fervent atmosphere at Elland Road for this midweek clash under the lights that could have significant implications in the relegation scrap.
Leicester vs Everton
The Foxes open May with Everton coming to town. Sean Dyche’s Toffees are expected to avoid the drop thanks to their form at Goodison Park, but the former Burnley boss will see this as a good opportunity to take points off a relegation rival away from home.
It’ll be the turn of the King Power faithful to create a vintage Monday Night Football atmosphere and guide the hosts over the line.
Leicester vs West Ham
Who knows what positions both these sides will be in come the final day of the season. However, given Leicester’s downward spiral and West Ham’s European ventures, there’s a genuine possibility the two sides are scrapping it out for a right to stay in the Premier League.
Now that would be something.
Four straight Premier League defeats have thrust Leicester right back into the dogfight. While they remain out of the relegation zone for the time being, 18th-place Bournemouth drew level with the Foxes on 24 points following their victory over Liverpool at the weekend.
Leicester’s superior goal difference, which is the best among the bottom nine sides, is keeping them afloat for now.