This weekend’s Community Shield clash between Premier League champions Leicester City and FA Cup winners Manchester United could be the foxes first chance at getting their hands on silverware since winning the league.
Last season Leicester City defied 5000-1 odds to become the first team outside of London or Manchester to win the league since Blackburn in 1994/95.
This weekend we’ll get a brief glimpse of what next season could entail as Leicester City compete in their first competitive game of the season after a relatively disappointing pre-season which saw them lost to both PSG and Barcelona, two teams that no team should be ashamed to lose to.
With Leicester City bringing in 5 new players and United bringing in 3 summer signings, both teams will be expected to have teething problems going into Sunday’s game.
This will be Leicester’s first visit to Wembley since 2000 and the first time they’ve visited the new 90,000 seater stadium.
The Community Shield is nothing new to Leicester after they won it all the way back in 1971 when it was known as the FA Charity Shield with a 1 – 0 victory over Liverpool.
Steve Whitworth score the only goal that game and went on to play for his hometown of Leicester City until 1979, making over 350 appearances for the foxes.
The question is, can the foxes replicate their form from the previous season?
Following Leicester City’s 4 – 2 defeat to Barcelona, boss Claudio Ranieri told LCFC TV
"“I’m very pleased with our performance. In the first half, we showed good discipline and tried to play our football, but at this moment of pre-season, it’s not possible. I am very confident.”"
Despite a leaky defence that conceded 9 goals in pre-season against Celtic, PSG and Barcelona, Leicester City fans have reason for optimism.
Leicester’s record signing and Wednesday’s man of the match Ahmed Musa will be looking to impress this season after a £16m summer move from CSKA Moscow. Scoring 2 goals against Barcelona he made an instant impact in pre-season and will be looking to carry this form into both the league and Champions League.
Despite reports of Arsenal’s interest in PFA Player of the Year Riyad Mahrez, the Algerian superstar remains a Leicester player, even if he is unsettled. Should Ranieri return him to a role on the right wing, Manchester United’s Luke Shaw will have a job on his hands containing him.
Mahrez isn’t the only Leicester player Arsenal have been interested in. Despite triggering his release clause, Jamie Vardy opted to play his football at the King Power stadium this upcoming season and if he can regain last season’s form, he’ll be a nightmare for defences all over the country.
United’s front line is likely to consist of summer signings Ibrahimovic in the 9 role, Mkhitaryan on the right wing with youngster Martial on the left and veteran Rooney player a supporting role behind Zlatan.
This deadly attack will be testing Ranieri’s defence which hasn’t impressed in pre-season after errors were punished in PSG and Barcelona.
However Musa, Vardy and Mahrez will be licking their lips at the thought of facing a centre back pairing of new signing Bailly and Smalling. Should they get a yard or two on them, there’s no catching the lightning fast trio, as Mascherano found out on Wednesday in Stockholm.
Date – Sunday 7th August
Kick-off – 4pm
Stadium – Wembley
Head to head (all comps):
Leicester City: 33
Manchester United: 60
Last 4 Meetings:
Manchester United 1 – 1 Leicester City
Leicester City 1 – 1 Manchester United
Manchester United 3 – 1 Leicester City
Leicester City 5 – 3 Manchester United