Why Leicester City Winning The Premier League Title Would Revolutionise English Football


On my side of the pond the Golden State Warriors (NBA) and Carolina Panthers (NFL) are runaway bandwagons at full speed, but neither can hold a candle to the best bandwagon in sport right now, belonging to Premier League leaders Leicester City.

Claudio Ranieri's team were 5,000-1 to win the league at the start of the season and Jamie Vardy 500-1 to finish top scorer. It's mid-December and those odds are now down to 20/1 and 8/5 respectively. 

The likelihood still remains that Leicester will be beaten to the title by Manchester City's superior squad, the enigma of Arsenal or even the drudgery of Manchester United, but we have to at least start considering the possibility that the flying Foxes can pull this off.

If they did win the title it would easily represent the greatest single achievement in Premier League history. Moreover, it would have some monumental implications for Leicester, their players and the league they are shaking up right now.

So what would it would really mean if the Foxes did the unthinkable and won the richest, most watched sports league in the world?

 

1. Ambitions dramatically altered for the chasing pack

If Leicester can rise from the Championship to win the Premier League in the space of two years, you can only imagine the boardroom conversations that will take place at clubs like Everton, Stoke, Crystal Palace and West Ham next summer.

Clubs that previously aspired to a top-six finish, realistically considering the top four out of reach, will adjust expectations and wonder aloud why the Leicester story couldn't happen to them.

This could have a twofold impact. Firstly we might see more ambition in the transfer market from the traditional mid-market clubs. Secondly, it could lead to less patience with managers whose teams drop below the fold and begin to hint at relegation. Ranieri has raised the bar for operating on a budget.

 

2. Buyers rush in for teams outside of the Premier League elite

Overseas investment has already changed the Premier League beyond recognition, but on the strength of Leicester winning the title we would see an even greater rush to get a piece of the pie.

Those mulling moves for clubs outside the traditional elite could find Leicester's story a compelling reason to dream big and go all-in - believing the Premier League playing field just got levelled and the top table is open for whoever is bold enough to take a seat.

Maybe a billionaire buys Brighton, hoping to achieve a similar feat and turn a promoted Championship club into Premier League winners. Or maybe we see big money finally thrown at clubs like Everton or Newcastle, believing that it's never been easier to wake sleeping giants.

 

3. The Premier League's transfer power increases

We live in an age where Xherdan Shaqiri, Bojan and Marko Arnautovic play for Stoke. Meanwhile Leicester's Riyad Mahrez is being linked to Barcelona on the strength of his captivating performances this season,

Leicester winning the title would magnify the message that landing pretty much anywhere in the Premier League (apart from Aston Villa right now) represents a strong move financially and career-wise for an overseas star. In a league where any result seems possible right now, headlines are there for the making.

Who'd have predicted Gokhan Inler's move from Napoli to Leicester would have given him perhaps an even better shot at winning the title than he would have had in Italy?

 

4. Ridiculous offers for Mahrez and Vardy

This one is already in the making, but should Leicester win the title you can expect an even greater determination to hold on to the two men who are driving their attacking brilliance, Mahrez and Vardy.

The pair cost Leicester just £1.5 million between them, so a huge profit is guaranteed, but the question becomes how much would it take for the club to let them go?

Is it possible to envisage a scenario where Leicester double down, offer both lucrative new contracts, and manage to keep hold of Vardy and Mahrez for a crack at a title defence? The football romantics would love to think so, but the pragmatists can only see one outcome here and that's both going for a very big number indeed.

 

5. The biggest Premier League summer transfer window on record

A title win for Leicester would help spark the biggest Premier League window on record next summer. We're talking about an arms race where clubs like Manchester United and City will, perhaps for the first time, be going after players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Neymar, with a real chance of brokering a deal.

Leicester's title win would not only propel activity from the bigger, richer clubs, but also encourage more ambition from the middling teams aspiring to their success.

Meanwhile, a greater pool of elite players than ever before will be angling for a Premier League move on the strength of a blockbuster season and dream of Leicester becoming a reality.

It all adds up to a wild window of big-money deals and a 2016-17 Premier League campaign packed with a greater density of world-class players than ever before seen. 

All thanks to Leicester.