Against all odds, Leicester City turned the tables and kicked Sevilla out of the Champions League after losing 2-1 In the first leg earlier this week. Goals from Wes Morgan and Marc Albrighton - and a penalty save from Kasper Schmeichel - allowed Leicester's dream to carry on. Leicester will now meet Atletico Madrid in the quarter-finals, in what is their first ever appearance in the Champions League. Here's a quick presentation of Leicester's strengths, weaknesses and history ahead of their...
One Reason They Could Win It...
Because why not?
Could anyone ever believe that Leicester would win the title last year? Certainly not. Leicester beat all the odds to lift their first national trophy in history, so why wouldn't they do it again?
Even without Claudio Ranieri on the bench and N'Golo Kanté on the pitch, the team remained pretty much identical, with the same kind of strengths both psychologically and footballing-wise.
Leicester are on their way to writing another beautiful page in their football history.
...One Reason They Might Not
Because they have more urgent things to care about...
Let's face it: winning the Champions League is not really the main objective of Leicester's season. Sitting 15th in the league with only a three point cushion over 18th-placed Hull City, Leicester have to save themselves before thinking about winning the Champions League.
And also they don't have N'Golo Kanté anymore, so things will continue to be tough domestically.
The One Stat That Will Make Your Friends Say "Oh, Really?"
Leicester put an end to great Sevilla series
Beating Sevilla, Leicester became the first team in more than three years to knock Sevilla out of a European competition - as Sevilla managed to go through their last 15 knockout stages in the past three seasons.
Winning the Europa League three years in a row in 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16, Sevilla looked unbeatable on home-away knockout until this week, and always managed to either overcome or protect the first leg result.
They had 18W, 4D and 5L of their last 27 European knockout games.
Since Claudio Ranieri was sacked on February 23rd, Leicester City have started their rebirth: 3 wins in the 3 games they've played since their change of manager, one of them being against Liverpool (3-1) and another one being Tuesday night's game (2-0).
Of course before that, Leicester were having a pretty terrible season. Apart from the Champions League (8 games, 5 wins, 2 losses and 1 draw), they're lightyears away from their past season's form.
Only seven wins in the Premier League, including their last two games, for 14 losses and 6 draws.
A Little Bit of History
There's not much to say on the history of Leicester City with European cups.
While this season marks their first appearance in the Champions League after 129 years of existence, they've only participated three times in European competitions before that: twice in the UEFA Cup in 1997-98 and 2000-01, both times out in the first round (1/32), and once in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup (1962, out in the round of 16).
The Key Player
He's the major disappointment of Leicester season. Yet, if the Foxes want to save themselves in the Premier League and dream of a Champions League semi-final, they will desperately need Riyad Mahrez.
He was incredibly good last season, with world class skills, crazy assists and breathtaking goals. He decided to stay at Leicester and turn down offers from big clubs, now he must live up to his status and be world class again.