With this weekend's top of the table clash between the league leaders, Leicester City, and the team sitting second, Manchester United only round the corner, it’s only right to look back upon the obvious best moment of last season (for Leicester fans), just to wet your appetite!
There’s one sunny Sunday afternoon that springs to the mind of every Leicester fan when talking about the recent match-ups between the sides and every time it’s mentioned the hair on the back of your necks stand, up. It’s the only game that truly fits the role of the best moment of the season gone by and it’s probably the best game that the King Power Stadium has seen in its 13 years. The magnitude of the game has been highlighted by Sky Sports as football fans all over the country could vote for the game as one of the Premier League's best ever moments, it eventually finished fifth overall!
The date of the game was the 21st of August 2014, only Leicester’s 5th game of their return season, after picking up a very promising five points from the opening four games, with their only loss against Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea. The visit of the famous Red Devils came at the perfect time for the Foxes on the back of an away win at Stoke. With an extremely, suspected full-strength, United line-up, the chances of Leicester winning were extremely small. The big names of Ángel Di Maria, Robin Van Persie, Wayne Rooney and Radamel Falcao all starting together for the first time showed Louis Van Gaal’s attacking intent.
United show quality early on
As the early Sunday afternoon game kicked off, it only took 12 minutes and 10 seconds for Man United to break the deadlock after Falcao’s deep searching cross found the head of the onrushing Robin Van Persie who was the coolest man in the stadium. Manchester United went two up three minutes after with an exquisite chip perfectly weighted over a helpless Kasper Schmeichel from Di Maria 18 yards out, showcasing why he was the most expensive Premier League player ever after a £60 million transfer from Real Madrid. The goal would later go on to be a contender for goal of the season.
No longer than the kick-off was taken that the ball was once again in the back of the net but this time Leicester were back in the game through a bullet header from Leonardo Ulloa after a pinpoint Jamie Vardy cross, almost identical to the header he scored against Arsenal only a couple of games before. The rest of the first half fizzled out after an electric start and both sides would have gone in at half-time content but wanting to do slightly better.
The second half started and the fourth goal came as quick as the first in the first-half, after 11 minutes this time. It was Ander Herrera’s quick thinking from a drilled Di Maria shot that gave United their third goal with a deft flick from an off-target shot. The travelling United fans surely thought that they’d see their team go on to win the game comfortably. That certainly wouldn’t be the case! After some hard work from Jamie Vardy, typical of the former non-league player, he was brought down in the box when Rafael attempted revenge after he felt as though Vardy fouled him. David Nugent stepped up and smashed the ball down the middle to open his Leicester City Premier League account. Once again Leicester were in the touching distance, could they really pull it back?
Leicester fight back with magnificent spirit
The question was answered just over five minutes later and it was a resounding yes! Esteban Cambiasso scored his first Leicester City goal in only his second game for the club. Dean Hammond’s attempted shot cannoning off a United leg into the path of the decorated Argentine and a drilled shot from the edge of the box found the bottom corner of David De Gea’s net. The King Power Stadium erupted as the ball caressed the goal!
The pressure from Man United to retake the lead came undone as the mercurial Ritchie De Laet broke away from the defence before playing an inch-perfect pass into the path of an even faster Jamie Vardy who did the rest with a composed finish into the bottom right corner. Leicester had taken the lead for the first time! To complete the game, the story of the match, Jamie Vardy’s hard work, prevailed once again as he was bundled over in the box by a lackadaisical Tyler Blackett. Blackett was given his marching orders and Ulloa completed the scoring with a powerful penalty into the bottom corner.
Once again, the King Power exploded with a noise they'd never heard before, and then even louder when the final whistle sounded. Leicester had done it, the impossible made possible! Surely a result that will live forever in the minds of the 32,000 fans that were present on that sunny September afternoon. When talking about Leicester - United, there's only one match that the Leicester fans will remember fondly.
With the Foxes sitting pretty at the top of the Premier League pile, many don't think it'll last as out of the next six, they're facing three of last season's top four.
Surely there won't be a repeat of last season's game but with Ranieri's men in the form they're in, you certainly wouldn't put it past them...