Leicester City vs Tottenham Hotspur - Who has a better chance to win the League?
We look at the various success factors that have led to Leicester and Tottenham's title bid
The Premier League has been full of surprises this season, the most notable of them being Leicester City. They are currently top of the table after almost being relegated last year! It indeed is a fairytale for the Foxes.
Everyone expected Leicester to be in the relegation fight this season and their odds of winning it at the start was 5000/1. But after beating Machester City comfortably at the Etihad last weekend, many have now marked them as favorites.
But there has been another team that have quietly stirred up a title challenge of their own. Tottenham Hotspur have been impressively accumulating points in the last few months and are well placed at second above bitter rivals Arsenal.
Mauricio Pochettino’s men have been playing some great football this season and many of their players have been hitting form at the right time for the Lilywhites.
With both Leicester and Spurs facing their biggest test yet at the weekend against Arsenal and Manchester City respectively, we take a look at each of the teams’ title credentials
Leicester can create history by becoming only the sixth team to win the Premier League and join an elite group of clubs and here’s why we think so:
Unlike some of the top clubs like Arsenal and Manchester City there isn’t any real pressure on Leicester to win the league title. Nobody expected them to even finish in the top half at the beginning of the season and nobody would blame them if they still don't win it from here.
They find themselves in a position of comfort their rivals can’t afford. This has allowed them to go and express themselves and just play football without having to concentrate on ambitions or silverware. That in itself is a big weight off their shoulders.
Work rate and Counter-attack:
Leicester this season have been the masters of the counter-attack. They have scored the most counter-attacking goals of any team in the league.
A team is most vulnerable to a counter-attack and Leicester have used the speed of Vardy and Mahrez to great effect this season, with their midfielders immediately releasing their forwards as soon as they win possession.
Teams have been unable to deal with the high intensity that Leicester are able to maintain throughout the 90 minutes. A good example of that was the Manchester City game, where Leicester exposed the failings of their backline, scoring a superb counter-attacking goal.
Unfamiliarity of the 4-4-2
Leicester have once again proven how effective the 4-4-2 system can be when applied properly.
Jamie Vardy is by default one of the front two in the formation with the other striker’s slot being rotated between Shinji Okazaki and Leonardo Ulloa.The formation is best utilized when one of the forwards drops into midfield temporarily making it a 4-5-1 when the opposition are in possession.
This allows a team to outnumber their opponents in crucial areas of the pitch. Thus, when Leicester have had the ball this season they have been able to outnumber the full backs and put in crosses in the box.
Since it’s a 4-4-2, it allows for more players to attack the ball in the box. firstly because there are two strikers rather than one who keep both centre-backs busy, and secondly, runners from midfield can now find themselves with space thus creating an overload in the area.
No cup distractions
Leicester were knocked out of both the League and FA Cup this season, as well as not having European commitments. That means they have only one competition to focus on which is the Premier League.
For most games they will have at least a week’s rest when other contenders might have to play up to two per week. There are 13 games to go in the Premier League and those are the only games that Ranier’s side will be playing.
On the other hand the likes of Tottenham, Manchester City and Arsenal might have to play up to 25 games in the coming months depending upon how far the teams progress in each competition.