An impressive 2-0 win against Chelsea on Tuesday night brought up the halfway point of the Premier League season for Leicester City, sending them top of the table in the process.
While the Foxes have since fallen to third, it has been a brilliant campaign so far especially considering the injury crisis that affected the club earlier in the season.
As Brendan Rodgers’ side look to stay in the title race and further their progress in both the Europa League and the FA Cup, we take a look at which players are on track for the end-of-season awards if they maintain their form.
Player of the season so far: James Justin
The resurgence of James Justin this term has been nothing short of remarkable. Injuries to Ricardo Pereira and Timothy Castagne have meant the young full-back has had to step up in their absence and he has done that with flying colours. He has not only played every single minute in the league this season, the 22-year-old has also featured in all six European matches.
His unwavering reliability across the backline has been perfectly matched by the quality of his performances which have seen him force his name into the debate for a place in the England squad for this summer’s European Championships.
Young player of the season so far: Wesley Fofana
The £30 million acquisition of Wesley Fofana from St Etienne in September was immediately met with scepticism due to his lack of experience in senior football however, it has proved to be an inspired signing. Like Justin, the 20-year-old was thrown in at the deep end as a result of Çağlar Söyüncü’s injury and he has exhibited excellence beyond his years, earning a call up to France Under-21s squad as a result of his performances. He has continued to improve every week and his imperious performance against Chelsea showed exactly why he is receiving recognition all over Europe.
Most improved player of the season so far: Youri Tielemans
Although it is hardly a surprise that Youri Tielemans has been playing so well this season, it comes on the back of a largely underwhelming campaign last time around following his £40 million move in 2019.
The Belgian international has stepped up as one of the senior figures in the squad this term and his astonishing consistency has been the driving force behind some of Leicester’s best results this season. He has been responsible for dictating the tempo in a number of his side’s victories and his terrific strike away at Newcastle perfectly underpins his increased involvement in front of goal.
Unsung Hero: Wilfred Ndidi
Despite playing just nine Premier League games since sustaining an abductor injury in September, Wilfred Ndidi’s return has been vital for the Foxes’ strong form. Since replacing a revitalised Nampalys Mendy after defeats against Liverpool and Fulham, the dominant Nigerian has been instrumental in a run of form which has brought six wins and two draws in nine matches.
His defensive stability alongside Tielemans has provided the base to unlock the offensive capabilities of his attacking teammates who are thriving at the moment.
Goal of the season so far: James Maddison vs Manchester City
One of those teammates is James Maddison who has been in blistering form over the last six weeks. When considering the best Leicester goal of the season so far, it was a decision between two of his fantastic curling efforts and while his left-footed finish again Brighton was sublime, his strike at the Etihad at the end of September was even better.
After coming off the bench with his side already 3-1 up, the 24-year-old sent an arching shot right into the top corner from all of 30 yards, leaving a sprawling Ederson with no chance.
Performance of the season so far: Manchester City 2-5 Leicester City
There have been several superb Foxes performances so far this term but there is one that stands heads and shoulders above the rest which is the aforementioned away game against Pep Guardiola’s side. A Jamie Vardy hat-trick inspired Leicester to come from behind emphatically on a day when many Leicester fans were expecting the worst with both Ricardo and Ndidi still out of action.
Riyad Mahrez put the hosts in front inside 10 minutes but Vardy’s treble followed by a Maddison screamer put the game out of sight. Nathan Aké pulled one back for the hosts before Tielemans netted a late penalty to put the game well beyond doubt.