In the last 10 years, Leicester City have played twice on April 18th. In 2009 they beat Southend, sealing their place as League One winners and in 2015 they beat Swansea, moving off the bottom spot of the Premier League on their eventual path to winning it the next season.
It’s a good date for us. I think that makes it pretty clear that we’re going to win, the only question is how. Here are three key areas of the game that will need to go right for the Foxes.
- Wes Morgan’s back -
We’ve outlined the possible results, but simply put, if the Foxes concede today they have to score three and that’s very unlikely against such strong opposition. The clean sheet is vital and with Robert Huth already ruled, we’re left praying on a late fitness test for Morgan, who’s missed the last six games. Even if he’s fit, can he go 90 minutes? 120?
Wes Morgan took part, looked sprightly and strong.— BBC Leicester Sport (@BBCRLSport) April 17, 2017
If you didn't know he'd been out then things looked pretty normal for him.
2. Support Jamie Vardy -
After the first leg, I talked about how isolated Vardy was left for much of the game. That cannot happen again if we’re to go through. Unfortunately it sounds like Slimani may not be fit, so it will be down to probably Ozakai, Mahrez and whoever starts on the left to make sure they get up around the England international to give him options to link up with. They’re capable of that, but the trick will be to accomplish it without giving their opponents too much room to counter attack.
3. Feed off the crowd -
Leicester will have to attack, but they also have to make sure they leave no space at the back for Griezman and co. That means they’re going to be working really really hard. Fortunately for them, the atmosphere at the King Power Stadium these days is electric, and they really get up for Champions League games above all. The players will need to draw on all of that energy
As good as Madrid are on the counter, we probably can't just push for a goal for 90 minutes and expect to not concede. Instead, I think the Foxes’ best chance will be to go all out for the first 10 minutes, feeding off the intensity of the crowd to give that high pressing, maximum effort burst out the gates that’s caught so many teams out before. If they can get a goal in that time, things are equal again and we can play our normal game for 80 minutes. Or 110.