As we head to the East Midlands with a certain sense of trepidation, I’ve been chatting with Chris Forryan from LeicesterTillIDie…
So, before we start, how did the website, and your involvement in it, come about?
It all started some ten years ago when I wrote for a blog called Silver Fox. From that, I set up my own blog page called Leicester Till I Die, which lead to a Facebook group and Twitter. The guy that ran Silver Fox wanted out so offered it to me and as it was bigger than my blog at the time, I took it over and set up the website.
What a start to the season it’s been! Did you see this coming? Or have you been surprised as the rest of us? This must have a 2015/16 feel about it.
It does in as much as I keep expecting us to trip up but nothing spectacular has happened yet.
Brendan came to us with ten games of last season to go, and as much as that was despised by Celtic fans, he was able to assess the team under match conditions against top-flight teams, not against, with respect to them, pre-season friendly games against the likes of Peterborough and Burton.
Add this to the changes Claude Puel was trying to make (and some credit has to go to him) and I thought we would challenge for a European place but, and yes other teams have struggled, they say the table never lies and second we sit at the moment!
You confident that Brendan Rodgers will hang around? He’d be mad to fall for the overtures from north London, wouldn’t he? You’re a much better side than Arsenal!
When he signed I never thought he would be a Fergie or Wenger. As good as Leicester are at the moment, and as good as we could possibly be, we are not a ‘big name’ club and I expected him to stay a few years, make his name again by doing reasonably well with us then move on, say, after three seasons of mild success with City.
Arsenal, as I say, are a name but we are doing better right now. He played it well to get a nice pay rise, but I think that if the Spurs, or even the Man Utd, job should become available it would all be too soon for him and he would be tainted after the way he also left Celtic. Once can be understood, twice so soon? Well…
While 2015/16 was the stuff of dreams, fair to say the Class of 2020 are more pleasing on the eye than Ranieri’s heroes? From a Leicester fan’s perspective… how do their playing styles differ?
A lot. Under Ranieri, it was hit them on the counter-attack, and we had the players to play to that style. We would be winning games with as little as 30 per cent possession at times.
Under Rodgers, it’s all about possession, reminding me of the Liverpool teams of the ’70s (yes I am that old). Keep hold of the ball, pass it around and wait for the right opportunity.
One was exciting, one is, as you say pleasing on the eyes, but nonetheless equally as exciting in blue-tinted spectacles
We know about Vardy, we know about Madderz (obviously) and, from watching England, we know a lot about Chilwell. Tell us a bit about those who have caught the eye who we don’t know as much about? Caglar Söyüncü looks a player.
Not bad when you sell your so-called best defender for £80m and have a ready replacement that we spent just under £20m on and it turns out he’s having the better season! Bought as a future replacement for Maguire having already started to get enquires last season, Söyüncü had a season to get used to England, the team etc and has been awesome.
However the two players who I would like to mention were buys from a few years ago and had appeared to stagnate, and that’s Demarai Gray and Kelechi Iheanacho. But both players, under Rodgers, have been transformed. Not always getting starts but doing the business when called upon, after both seemed to be running out of time at City.
Harvey Barnes, since coming back from a loan under Puel, is an England star of the future – a great attacking midfielder counterbalanced by Hamza Choudhury; just as good but in a defensive midfield role.
Am loathed to ask… but what have you made of our season so far? Any City players you’d like to see at the King Power?
You had a great start and then have fizzled out. I like to see the (no disrespect) unfashionable teams (I include LCFC in there) do well and the big boys struggle. Sheffield Utd have done well coming up but some promoted teams do that until they get worked out. Let’s see where they end up. You are only four points off 17th but you do need to start winning again and soon so a gap doesn’t open up (after Saturday though, please) and winning against those teams around you. Pukki was the player everyone was talking about and he did look good at the start of the season. That said, as already mentioned, Nacho is coming good, so maybe not – sorry.
VAR – discuss. How’s it affected you so far? Have you come out on the right side?
Okay, this might take longer than we have to kick off. First game against Wolves, we got away with one, against Liverpool we didn’t. To be honest, it’s no different than before – some you get some you don’t (unless you’re LiVARpool when you get them all at the moment). It will probably even itself out. I think we just now blame VAR rather than the ref. For me, the jury is out
Finally… and (again) I’m loathed to ask, a score prediction?
On paper, we should win this, but we all know games are not played out on paper. We have to slip up soon, it’s what Leicester do, but I said 3-0 on the LCFC Lovesport Radio show on Tuesday and I’m gonna stick with that.