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homer

Well-Known Member
Load of ****wits on an internet football forum. What do they know, wankers...

Oh, hang on a minute
 

camberwell fox

Well-Known Member
Tempted to leave it a bit.

slipped up last season as had a £20 to win the league and just before the Man City game at Christmas I had a buy out @ £607 and let my heart rule my head.

not this time though!
 

Brown Nose

Well-Known Member

Youri Tielemans exclusive interview: 'Lucky Leicester? We were just better than Manchester City'​

Midfielder has been a key part of Leicester's impressive structure, and is taking on more of a role as a leader

ByJohn Percy3 October 2020 • 9:49am

Youri Tielemans is an understated, deep thinker but bursts out laughing when he considers the charge that Leicester were “lucky” in last weekend’s annihilation of Manchester City.

The accusation came from City midfielder Rodri, with the Spaniard also claiming Leicester did “nothing” to secure their 5-2 win and played with 11 men behind the ball. Tielemans struggles to suppress a smile when Rodri’s words are put to him, and you can understand why.

There is nothing lucky about Leicester’s start to the Premier League season, with Jamie Vardy on fire, Harvey Barnes marking his fine progress with a call-up to the England squad and Brendan Rodgers removing any fears over a hangover from last season’s disappointing finish with three wins out of three ahead of Sunday's meeting with West Ham.

At the heart of Leicester’s outstanding performance at the Etihad Stadium was Tielemans, the record £32million signing who epitomises the quiet, ruthless efficiency that has become the team’s trademark.
In his first national newspaper interview since moving from Monaco permanently last year, Tielemans is sitting in the media room at Leicester’s training ground reflecting on Rodri’s assessment.

“It wasn’t luck, not at all,” he says, smiling. “We did have players behind the ball because they play from defender to defender but that’s what you need against a team like City.

“It should be a compliment for them, because we know their qualities and how they want to keep possession of the ball. We had to match their play by doing something else, counter-attacking in a way where they couldn’t manage our game.

“We were given three clear penalties but I don’t think that’s why we won. I think we were smarter and better on Sunday. It was a great team performance and everyone individually was very good. We kept to the game-plan and for me, yes, I think it was one of my best performances"

It was also one of those rare afternoons where Kevin De Bruyne, Tielemans’s team-mate and close friend in the Belgium national team, was overshadowed. Tielemans controlled the game in a deep midfield role, driving his team forward and playing a key pass to Timothy Castagne in the build-up to Vardy’s outrageous flick for Leicester’s second goal.

“It’s not always great to play against Kevin!” says Tielemans, laughing again. “To keep him quiet was nice and he wasn’t at his best on Sunday, but his team wasn’t either so it didn’t help him. It wasn’t easy for him against us.

“We didn’t have a plan to stop Kevin, or any other individuals, it was really a team performance to stop them from building up play and prevent them from penetrating through the middle.

“The only negative point was our corner kicks and free kicks - they had the first contact which wasn’t good.”

Tielemans is clearly a perfectionist, and he is a footballer fascinated by the intricacies of tactics and match preparation who Rodgers calls his “coach on the pitch”.

He is still only 23 but admits he has already seen pretty much everything the game has to offer. He joined the revered Anderlecht academy at the age of five, making his debut in the Champions League just 11 years later.

At the age of 20 he was named the Belgian Professional Footballer of the Year. In 2017 he joined Monaco, shortly after they had lifted the Ligue 1 title and then “sold half the team” with the departures of players including Kylian Mbappé, Bernardo Silva, Benjamin Mendy and Tiemoue Bakayoko

Tielemans highlights his upbringing near Brussels as pivotal to his development as a player and a person.
“At Anderlecht in the academy nearly everything was about technique, and understanding the game,” he says. “They teach you about the tactical side of the game, without really talking about it.

“It’s all about technique and shape, and once you get into the first-team they work on the physical aspect. I was ready to play at 16. I’ve still got a lot to learn but I try and pass on what I’ve experienced to players who haven’t.

“When there is a tactical meeting or question, I try to answer and that is sometimes by me talking on the pitch: you understand the players around you more and the way they want to receive the ball, or their movement. I try to make it easier for all of us. I know it sounds a bit strange because I’m only 23 but I’ve had a lot of experience already.”

It has been quite a journey, so it is no surprise that he became a member of Leicester’s ‘leadership group’ soon after his arrival.

He lives in the quaint Leicestershire village of Quorn with wife Mendy and two daughters Melina and Leana, and is never going to be pictured falling out of nightclubs.

Tielemans is a key figure in the Rodgers revolution, and the team’s youthful core is central to what Leicester’s manager is building. Castagne, an £18million signing from Atalanta, and centre-half Caglar Soyuncu are both 24, James Maddison is 23, Barnes and James Justin are 22. Wesley Fofana, who joined from St Etienne on Friday for £30 million, is just 19.

Yet it is Leicester’s talismanic striker, Vardy, who never ceases to amaze Tielemans with his enduring quality at the age of 33. He scored a hat-trick in the win over Manchester City and Gareth Southgate revealed this week that Vardy remains in contention for an England recall.

“‘Vards’ really enjoys playing with the players around him. Last season he got the Golden Boot and it made him realise he wants more,” says Tielemans.

“He’s started on fire and hopefully he can keep doing his work like he is now. He is crazy around the place and enjoys life, he loves to laugh a lot.

“He looks after himself and does all the right things - but I don’t think he has a lot of choice because of his age! Please don’t tell him I said that…”

Last Sunday’s victory over Pep Guardiola was a champagne moment for Rodgers, and answered any questions over whether last season’s difficult finish would spill into this campaign.

Before January there had been a tidal wave of optimism, after a club record eight Premier League wins in a row had them flickering in Jurgen Klopp’s rear-view mirror, albeit faintly.

From New Years’ Day, however, Leicester took just 20 points from 54 and missed out on a Champions League place on the final day.

Rodgers did fulfil his pre-season target of a top-six finish, guaranteeing a Europa League spot, and is right when the season overall should be viewed as progress.

But to get so close and have such an alarming slide in results was a disappointment, and Tielemans admits it could have lingered in the dressing room.

“Of course it was important to start well. When we came back in for pre-season we said okay, let’s use that disappointment from the end of last season and turn it into a positive,” he says. “We played a brilliant first-half to the season but from January onwards we dropped our standards and it was all a bit slow. The results and performances weren’t good enough and the lockdown didn’t help - we had injuries and the negativity built up.

“It wasn’t great and we knew that, so we had to start again. The manager was very good mentally for us, he told us to forget about last season and focus on new goals this season. It has been a great start.”
 

Speedy1

Active Member

A bit of love for Jamie.
Jamie Vardy. He's given me more pleasure than my missus, and that's saying something. Muzzy was always my all-time favourite but JV long ago replaced him in my affections. I'd have his baby's if that was biologically possible. Great article.
 

Speedy1

Active Member
Jamie Vardy. He's given me more pleasure than my missus, and that's saying something. Muzzy was always my all-time favourite but JV long ago replaced him in my affections. I'd have his baby's if that was biologically possible. Great article.
That's babies before the pedants get involved.
 
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