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Football News: A To Z: Leicester City

A To Z: Leicester City
Image from: freelargeimages.com

A To Z - Leicester City

 


A is for Arthur

The club's all-time record goalscorer is Arthur Chandler, and his goals fired Leicester to within a point of the league title in 1929. In the early 60's they also had another top goalscorer, Arthur Rowley, whose 434 league goals is an all-time British record. In fact, in their top 10 of record goalscorers, three of them are called Arthur and all three scored more goals for the Foxes than Gary Lineker!

 


B is for Bible

Leicester were established by a bible class in 1884. It was 21 years after the creation of the Football Association and the founders established a committee, paying 9d to join and a further 9d to buy a football.

 


C is for Chocolate

Leicester Fosse's strip when they first entered the Football League was chocolate brown and blue halves. Prior to that they wore black tops with a sky-blue sash and long white trousers rather than shorts! It was 1903 before they switched to the colours they are now known for of blue and white.

 


D is for Doubles

Twice double winning English sides opened the door for Leicester to compete for a trophy. In 1961 they lost the FA Cup final to double winners Tottenham Hotspur, but due to Spurs being in the European Cup instead, they were England's entrants in the European Cup Winners' Cup. In 1971 the Foxes won their only Charity Shield as double winners Arsenal had commitments in European competition and so were unable to compete. Leicester beat the FA Cup runners up, Liverpool, 1-0 with a goal by Steve Whitworth.

 


E is for Europe

While Leicester City may not have had much European success of their own yet, European football did provide their one and only Charity Shield win. In 1971, as the winners of Division 2, they were invited to play FA Cup runners up Liverpool as double winning Arsenal's European commitments meant they were unable to take part. The Foxes won it 1-0 courtest of a Steve Whitworth goal.

 


F is for Fosse

Leicester City were initially called Leicester Fosse. That was because of the Fosse Way, an old Roman thoroughfare, that ran from South West to North East England. One of the founders, Frank Gardner, said at the time: "As the Fosse is known throughout the land, so the new club shall be known to the future." Their first match took place just off Fosse Road South against Syston Fosse.

 


G is for Goals

When you see a goal has been scored by Leicester now, you can be almost certain it has come from the boot of Jamie Vardy, but he is just 4th (currently) on their list of top goalscorers ever. Top is Arthur Chandler with 273, second is Arthur Rowley with 265 and third, quite a way behind those two, is Ernie Hine with 156. Vardy's current total (as of 20th November 2020) of 139 leaves him trailing behind.

 


H is for Heroes

There is no other word for the 2015-16 season Premier League winning team in Leicester than heroes. So much so that their only Ballon d'Or nominees since the great Gordon Banks, Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, received their nominations while playing in that side. Mahrez also won the club's only PFA Player of the Year that season, Vardy the clubs only ever FWA Footballer of the Year. Manager Claudio Ranieri also won the Overall and Premier League LMA Manager of the Year and Best FIFA Men's Coach. The team itself also won the BBC Sports Personality Team of the Year and ESPN Team of the Year awards, the only time they have won either award.

 


I is for Ice Kings

In the 1962-63 season the Foxes' team was dubbed the "Ice Kings" as they led the old First Division through the winter due to excellent form on icy and frozen pitches. They ended the season in 4th. The form was probably due to the management of Matt Gillies, who implemented a system based on the style of play used previously by the great Austrian and Hungarian teams.

 


J is for Jamie

For years there was only one goalscorer anyone thought of when the name Leicester City was mentioned, arguably he is also the club's most famous supporters, Gary Lineker. Nowadays he has been supplanted in most people's eyes by a new goalscoring icon, Jamie Vardy. Despite coming late to professional sport from the non-league scene, Vardy's exploits make him a legend at Leicester and took him into international football with England. The big question is, at the age of 33, how much more is left in the tank?

 


K is for King Power

It was 2010 when King Power owner Khun Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha bought the club from Milan Mandaric, with it then in the Championship. Sadly he died in a helicopter accident alongside four others outside the club's stadium in 2018 but the club's ownership remains in the hands of his family, with his son Khun Aiyawatt the current chairman.

 


L is for Lineker

Gary Winston Lineker is arguably the club's most famous ever youth product, due to both his exploits with England and his later career in broadcasting. Lineker was with Leicester from 1978 until 1985, when he signed for reigning champions Everton. He hung his boots up after scoring 48 goals in 80 appearances with England.

 


M is for Midland

The newly formed Leicester Fosse club joined the Midland League in 1891 before being elected to Division Two of the Football League in 1894.

 


N is for Nine

When the club founders set up Leicester Fosse, they formed a committee and paid 9d each upon entry and a further 9d to buy a football.

 


O is for O'Neill

Martin O'Neill established his reputation as a manager with a spell at Leicester City in the late 1990s. O'Neill led Leicester to four consecutive top-10 finishes and twice into qualification for the UEFA Cup as well as a League Cup win.

 


P is for Problems

In October 2002 Leicester went into administration following their relegation from the Premier League, though they still managed to get back up into the Prem at the end of that season.

 


Q is for Quit

The club's motto is "Foxes Never Quit" which is written above the player's tunnel entrance.

 


R is for Ranieri

The man who led them to their one and only, so far, league title was Italian Claudio Ranieri. They were rated by the bookies as 5000/1 against to win the Premier League before that 2015/16 season kicked off.

 


S is for School

The founders were a group of former pupils of Wyggeston School, then a grammar school for boys but now a sixth form college in Leicester.

 


T is for Thailand

The club is owned by a consortium led by the Thai owner of the King Power Group. The Asian Football Investments consortium which owns the club (which former owner Milan Mandaric is an investor in) is based in Thailand. The club's main shirt sponsors are the Tourism Authority of Thailand and the sleeve sponsor is a Vietnamese beer producer called Bia Saigon, which is owned by ThaiBev, which is based in, yes you guessed it, Thailand.

 


U is for Unbelievables

The Leicester team which won the 2015/16 Premier League title is often known as 'The Unbelievables'. It was the highest odds winner in sports for most bookmakers, as they were a team that had only narrowly avoided relegation the previous season. Their fans are still celebrating the title now!

 


V is for Victoria

The club's first settled venue for matches was Victoria Park, which they used between 1884 and 1887 before a move to Belgrave Road Cycle and Cricket Ground.. Unfortunately for the then Leicester Fosse team, Leicester Tigers Rugby Club outbid them in 1888 and they were forced into a shortlived return to Victoria Park.

 


W is for Walnut

The club's longlasting and famous Filbert Street home stadium was originally known as the Walnut Street Ground. They moved there in October 1891 and stayed there until 2002, when they moved to their new purpose-built stadium, which they still inhabit.

 


X is for Xenocracy

Leicester have been run by foreign owners since 2007 when Milan Mandaric bought the club from the consortium, led by Foxes' legend Gary Lineker, which had saved it from administration in 2002.

 


Y is for Yagiment

There must have been a huge sense of excitement around the club in 1981 when manager Jock Wallace announced that Johan Cruyff was close to signing for the Foxes. However it had been a ploy by the Scotsman, trying to force Cruyff's hand while in negotiations which had initially seemed promising, but were now looking like a forlorn hope. Wallace's side were bottom of the old First Division and Wallace believed that bringing in Johan Cruyff, even at the age of 33 after a couple of years playing in the United States, would save the club from relegation. Cruyff instead for signed for Spanish club Levante who sweetened their offer with (reportedly) up to 50% of gate money.

 


Z is for Zagorakis

As well as winning 120 caps for his country, Theodoros Zagorakis also played for Leicester City between July 1997 and July 2000, when he left for AEK Athens on a free transfer. The midfielder, who is now retired and president of PAOK Salonika, managed 59 games after eventually making his debut under Martin O'Neill in February 1998.

 


To read the previous A To Z: ChievoVerona click here.

Written by Tris Burke December 10 2020 04:42:25

 

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