Leicester City End Of Term Report
The ‘I f*cking love this game’ highlight of the season?
There weren’t many to choose from, but even if there had been, our 4-0 destruction of F****t would have been up there.
The season ticket shredding moment?
Following our first back-to-back League wins all season in March (against Derby and Coventry) with defeat to Bristol City who had gained just one point from their previous seven games.
Moment that just about summed it all up?
In the last game of November we notched up a 2-0 home win over Blackpool and, having taken seven points from Pearson’s first three games in charge, went into sixth. We then didn’t win in the next five games or pick up another home win until February. Although we didn’t know it, our hopes of promotion ended then.
Got the right manager?
Probably. People criticising Nigel Pearson shouldn’t forget that in his last stint he lifted the League One title in his first season and took us to with in a penalty kick of the Championship play-off final in his second. It also shouldn’t be forgotten that Pearson has had to clear up the mess left by a season and a half of managerial upheaval and, despite injuries, sulking players (yes you, Matt Mills) and poor refereeing decisions, we finished higher than last season. We now have a group of player who have had a season to get to know each other and he knows where we need to strengthen. However, if it doesn’t work out the board could do worse than turn to his former assistant Chris Powell who has just led Charlton to the League One title.
We need find that team spirit again.
Player of the season?
Really, there is only on choice - Kasper Schmeichel. Rarely put a foot wrong (we’ll even forgiven him a red card against F****t which cost us a win early in the season). The fact he got both the fans’ and players’ player of the Year awards says it all.
What would you change next term if you were the gaffer?
The mentality of the squad. The success we had a couple of seasons ago under Pearson came with a team with few stars but a high work ethic. All that changed under the new owners, Sven-Goran Eriksson and his host of big money buys. We need find that team spirit again. It is the ingredient that has seen the likes of Norwich , Swansea , Southampton and Reading gain promotion. Perhaps this is what Pearson was hinting at when he said there would be significant changes in the summer.
Which player would you like to sign?
Both Jermaine Beckford and David Nugent have profited in their careers when playing along side a target man and with it looking like Steve Howard has left the club we’re now short of one. I’d like to see the return of one Emile Ivanhoe Heskey. Yes he’s 34 but he’s still started over half Villa’s League games this season (and come off the bench in another 10) so fitness is unlikely to be an issue. His ability with the ball at his feet is also often overlooked. Critics point to his lack of goals but his strength is in creating problems for even the best of defences (which he can still do) allowing his strike partner to take advantage. This is where Nugent, Beckford and Leicester would profit.
In the grand scheme of things it didn’t really mean that much but Ben Marshall’s 35-yard screamer against Chelsea in the FA Cup quarter final was the highlight of the season.
Can I go for Peter Taylor? No, too long ago? Alright then. There’s more than a little mystery surrounding Matt Mills’ demotion to the reserves but it seems that the ex-captain didn’t take too kindly to being dropped and Pearson didn’t take too kindly to the way Mills expressed this. Perhaps Mills was blinded by the size of his transfer fee but, as club captain, he should have handled the situation differently.
Player’s tweet of the season?
Twitter gets a lot of bad Press, but really it’s nothing more that a mirror reflecting human nature – the good and the bad. And, every so often, a Tweet comes along to put the game into perspective. So it was late last month that winger Paul Gallagher revealed that his “precious” son Luca James had died after Gallagher’s wife Hayley had gone in to labour several months early. Luca’s twin sister Ava Amelie is still fighting for her life in a special-care baby unit.
How do you plan to get through the summer without football?
Well, there’s Euro 2012 and the Olympics, ooh and cricket, so I reckon I’ll cope…
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