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When did Leicester City win the Premier League title?


Leicester City etched their name in sports history when they became the most improbable Premier League champion of the English top-flight’s modern era.

Just a few years ago, the Foxes became an overnight global sensation by coming out of nowhere to make a title run. They were Premier League title long shots in the preseason, having finished 14th the season prior, only their second year back in the top division after a spell in the lower tiers.

Yet then-manager Claudio Ranieri, captain Wes Morgan, prolific striker Jamie Vardy and the rest of the Foxes produced a season to remember, and cemented their place as one of the greatest underdog stories in football history.

From that unrivalled high to a familiar low; the final day of the 2022/23 season delivered the shock of Premier League relegation for the Foxes, as they joined Leeds United and Southampton in the bottom three.

But now they are back in the big time. Leeds United’s shock 4-0 defeat at QPR on April 26 mean that Leicester’s grip on an automatic promotion place in the Championship became unassailable, and they have been restored to the Premier League once again.

The Sporting News brings you all you need to know about that magical season, plus where that famous group of players are now.

Leicester City shocked the football world to win the Premier League title in the 2015/16 season. Led by manager Claudio Ranieri, they finished 10 points clear of the pack, with 81 points compared to the 71 of second-place Arsenal.

Bookmakers had the Foxes at 5000/1 odds to win the league prior to the start of the season, underpinning just how improbable the championship season was.

Additionally, Jamie Vardy set a Premier League record for consecutive league games with a goal with 11 straight, while his teammate Riyad Mahrez became the first African international to win the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year award.

The team remarkably employed just 23 players during Premier League matches, a clear indication at how a consistent lineup and very few injuries led to their unexpected success.

Goalkeepers: Kasper Schmeichel, Mark Schwarzer, Jonny Maddison

Defenders: Wes Morgan, Robert Huth, Christian Fuchs, Danny Simpson, Ritchie De Laet, Marcin Wasilewski, Daniel Amartey, Yohan Benalouane

Midfielders: Danny Drinkwater, Marc Albrighton, N’Golo Kante, Shinji Okazaki, Jeffrey Schlupp, Andy King, Gokhan Inler, Demarai Gray, Nathan Dyer, Joe Dodoo

Forwards: Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez, Leonardo Ulloa, Andrej Kramaric

Interestingly, Leicester City didn’t have that many earth-shattering, signature wins in the 2015/16 season. Instead, they were the most consistent club in a season during which many of the top teams continued to falter.

In fact, Leicester City lost both matches against second-place Arsenal, and they also fell to defeat to Liverpool on Boxing Day. Those would be their only three losses, however, as they managed to secure draws with many top clubs and then beat up on the other teams throughout the table.

Following a 1-1 draw with Manchester United on May 1, the title was mathematically clinched the following day when Tottenham dropped points in a draw with Chelsea.

Leicester City notable Premier League results 2015/16

No matter how improbable the title chase was, it was even more unlikely that Leicester City would be able to remain a force in the Premier League. It was always going to be a struggle for Leicester City to parlay their magical season into becoming a serial contender.

A big reason for their sudden success was their ability to hit it big with multiple player acquisitions, such as N’Golo Kante, Riyad Mahrez, and Christian Fuchs, and their departures to bigger clubs, or eventual regression, would be unavoidable.

The result was a slow, but expected, decline since the dizzying heights of 2016.

In the seasons that followed, Leicester City finished in the top half of the table in all but one season, with clear signs of an eventual drop-off before being relegated at the end of 2022/23.

Now they are back, they will be hoping to climb the Premier League table again.

Most of the players from that 2015/16 title-winning Leicester City squad are no longer with the team.

In fact, only two players still remain with the club in 2024: striker Jamie Vardy and Marc Albrighton.Vardy is still an integral part of the side, but Albrighton has been restricted to the bench in 2023/24. 

In the aftermath of the title-winning season, midfielder N’Golo Kante was the first to make a big-money move, leaving immediately that summer for Chelsea, where he grew into a key player and would win multiple trophies, although injuries have hampered him. Fellow midfielder Danny Drinkwater would follow Kante to Chelsea a year later, making an infamous big-money move in 2017 that failed spectacularly.

The player to earn the club the most money would be Riyad Mahrez, whose move to Manchester City in 2018 would net the Foxes a massive €67.8 million transfer fee.

Goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel stuck around for quite a while until his eventual departure for French club Nice, and both captain Wes Morgan and defender Robert Huth would retire at the end of their time with Leicester City.

Left-back Christian Fuchs eventually became the first player to join new MLS club Charlotte FC, and after captaining the American club through its first-ever season, he retired and joined their coaching staff.

Manager Claudio Ranieri also moved on, leaving the club in 2017 and bouncing around Europe, currently with Serie A side Cagliari after stints with Nantes, Fulham, Roma, Sampdoria, and Watford.

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