3 Feel-Good Stories from the 2020-21 Football Season

West Ham United v Leicester City - Premier League
West Ham United v Leicester City - Premier League
Thato Diale

Everybody loves feel-good stories. Football fans are no different.

Many footballers across Europe have experienced mixed fortunes with their careers. Some players started their careers as exciting, young prospects, but failed to deliver on the lofty expectations set for them.

Others will blossom late into their careers, once they have found the right environment conducive for their success.

A fine example of a footballer living his dream would be Jamie Vardy, who went from playing for Conference side Fleetwood Town to winning the Premier League title with Leicester City.

Mohamed Salah is another example of someone who was earning a living for himself in Egypt when the Port Said Massacre led to the cancelation of Egyptian football in 2012. The tragic event turned out to be a blessing in disguise for Salah's footballing career.

A decade later he has lifted the UEFA Champions League and Premier League trophies while playing for Liverpool.

Similar stories can hold true for football clubs as well. Leicester City’s journey from Championship football to competing in the Champions League in the span of five years is legendary.

These are the stories that make the game worthwhile.

This article will look at some of the feel-good stories from the 2020-2021 football season, ranging from players to clubs who turned their fortunes around for the better. Let’s look at the 3 redemption stories from the 2020-21 footballing season.

#3. West Ham United

West Ham United v Leicester City - Premier League
West Ham United v Leicester City - Premier League

The London outfit currently sit 4th on the Premier League table, with 55 points from their 32 league matches played. They are firmly in the hunt for a UEFA Champions League spot next season.

The Hammers finished 16th last season, with 39 points from their 38 matches. They conceded 62 goals, which was the 4th worst defense in the division. West Ham have conceded only 42 goals and have scored 53 goals this season, 4 more than what they managed all of last season.

Under the tutelage of David Moyes, the club has seen its vision come to fruition this season.

Years of investing resources into signing top-class players such as Tomas Soucek, Pablo Fornals and Jarrod Bowen and revamping the London Stadium could all pay off by the end of the season. The Hammers are on the verge of welcoming European football to the London Stadium.

#2. AC Milan

AC Milan v UC Sampdoria - Serie A
AC Milan v UC Sampdoria - Serie A

The Rossoneri are currently second in the Serie A table, 9 points behind league leaders and bitter rivals Inter Milan. AC Milan finished the 2019-20 season in 6th place, on 66 points. They currently have 66 points with 7 matches in the Serie A campaign. Their season has been nothing short of impressive.

Milan have not finished in the Serie A top four since the 2012-13 campaign, which makes this campaign all the more impressive. They have spent a large portion of the season atop the league table, with their title charge losing steam in recent months.

The Rossoneri are currently the best away team in the division, with 13 wins, 1 draw and 1 defeat. Overall, they have scored 59 goals and conceded 36.

They were eliminated from the Europa League in the quarterfinals by Manchester United. Stefano Pioli’s side has been a joy to watch this season, and without a doubt one of the best redemption stories of the season.

#1. Jesse Lingard

Newcastle United v West Ham United - Premier League
Newcastle United v West Ham United - Premier League

The Englishman has enjoyed a spectacular second half of the season since joining West Ham United on loan from Manchester United in the January transfer window. Lingard finished the 2019-20 Premier League campaign with one solitary goal.

In the first half of the season, he made a handful of appearances for the Red Devils, most of which came in cup competitions. Since his move to West Ham in January, the Englishman has been in a rich vein of form, scoring 9 goals in 10 Premier League matches for the Hammers. He also created 3 assists during this span.

His form has seen him earn a Team of the Week placement and a call-back to the national team where he assisted a goal in England’s 5-0 win over San Marino in the World Cup Qualifiers. Lingard has gone from Manchester United’s bench to being linked with some of the top teams in Europe in a matter of a few months.

Edited by Diptanil Roy
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