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11th Apr 2016

Where are Leicester City’s relegation-dodging heroes of 2014/15 now?

Tom Victor

In all the discussion of Leicester’s scarcely believable rise from relegation contenders to champions-elect, one element has rarely cropped up.

While many mention the late-season run under Nigel Pearson, few recall the potential momentum-sapping two minute spell at Turf Moor which could have seen it all come to naught.

On April 25, 2015, the Foxes faced a tricky trip to a relegation struggler for their 33rd game of the Premier League season. They picked up all three points thanks to a goal from Jamie Vardy around the hour mark. But that’s where the similarities end.

Burnley v Leicester City - Premier League

Going into the trip to Burnley, Leicester were on 28 points, behind 17th-placed Hull City and with Sunderland one point and one place better off.

The Clarets were by no means out of touch, sitting just two points behind their visitors and with a chance to leapfrog them with a win.

Shortly before the hour mark, with the game still goalless, Burnley were awarded a penalty after Matt Taylor was brought down in the box. If the midfielder scored, those Leicester wins against West Ham, West Brom and Swansea might have all been for nothing.

But Taylor hit the post, and less than 60 seconds later Vardy scrambled the ball into the back of Tom Heaton’s net at the other end. Leicester took 10 further points from their final five games, and the seven Burnley added from their final four outings would not be enough to lift them above the drop-zone.


Remarkably, only six of the 14 players used by Pearson that day have been regular starters this season – Kasper Schmeichel, Robert Huth, Wes Morgan, Marc Albrighton, Danny Drinkwater and Vardy (Riyad Mahrez was an unused sub).

Of the remaining eight, only Leo Ulloa and Andy King have started in the Premier League since the turn of the year, each doing so exactly once.

Here’s what has happened to the others involved on that April afternoon in Lancashire.

Marcin Wasilewski

A key component of the switch to three centre-backs which helped the Foxes’ survival bid last season, the Pole has featured sparingly since Claudio Ranieri returned to four at the back.

He has just two Premier League appearances to his name this season, the second of them coming in the 2-1 defeat to Arsenal where he gave away the late free-kick from which Danny Welbeck headed in the winning goal.

Arsenal v Leicester City - Premier League

Paul Konchesky

Konchesky, who brought down Taylor for that Burnley penalty, was at the centre of some of Leicester’s lower ebbs, including the short backpass to West Ham’s Andy Carroll which helped ensure Pearson’s team were bottom at Christmas.

He played just one more game in a Leicester shirt – completing 90 minutes in the following Wednesday’s defeat at home to Chelsea – before being loaned out to QPR over the summer. He has not featured for the R’s since early March and can currently be found running a Pie & Mash cafe in Essex.

Burnley v Leicester City - Premier League

Esteban Cambiasso

Leicester’s marquee signing in their first season back in the big time, the former Champions League winner may be regretting his decision to turn down the club’s offer of a second year at the King Power Stadium.

Still, at least he won’t be missing out on a league title. The Argentine is currently at Olympiacos, who won the Greek league way back in February.


Matty James

Former Manchester United youngster James featured regularly in the 2014/15 campaign, playing more than two thirds of Leicester’s league games.

However, he has yet to feature this season due to a cruciate ligament injury suffered during the win over Southampton last May. Not that he’d have necessarily got much game time anyway, given the form of N’Golo Kanté in central midfield.

Leicester City v Sunderland - Premier League

Andrej Kramarić

Leicester’s record signing when he joined from Croatian club Rijeka, Kramarić was expected to kick on this season after showing glimpses of his quality during the last campaign.

But the form of a certain England international, coupled with the contributions of Leo Ulloa and Shinji Okazaki, meant the 24-year-old managed less than half an hour of Premier League football this season before being loaned out to Hoffenheim. He’s fared slightly better in the Bundesliga, with four goals in 10 games.

Aston Villa v Leicester City - FA Cup Fifth Round

Ritchie De Laet

After keeping Danny Simpson on the bench for much of last season, De Laet started this campaign as first choice too, only to lose his starting spot when Ranieri looked to tighten things up at the back.

It’s not all bad for the Belgian international, though. He is currently on loan to Middlesbrough, and could remarkably end the campaign with league titles in two divisions.

Leicester City v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League