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On Sunday, Leicester City will host Brentford in their first match of the season at the King Power Stadium. There will be no new faces in the Leicester squad as they are yet to make a signing. This comes as a bit of surprise, considering the Foxes’ disappointing campaign last season. Can Brentford take advantage of a Leicester City side that are still licking the wounds of last season?
After mounting two back-to-back challenges for a top four spot, we saw a massive dip in Leicester’s form last year. Repeated injuries to several key players did not help, but the high spirit that characterized the Foxes under Brendan Rodgers was largely absent. In the end, the 2015/16 Premier League champions finished 8th, a step below the last available European spot.
The lack of European football might come as a blessing in disguise for Leicester as they can solely concentrate on making it back to the top six. But, the club’s summer inactivity could derail their season. Kasper Schmeichel’s departure to Nice will deal a big blow to their ambitions. The future of key players like Youri Tielemans and Wesley Fofana is also up in the air.
Veteran striker Jamie Vardy will be ready to spearhead the Leicester attack, with Harvey Barnes and James Maddison playing supporting roles. Dennis Praet has come back to Leicester following a loan spell at Torino. But, he might not make the cut for the first XI over Kiernan Frank Dewsbury-Hall.
When Brentford made it to the Premier League last season, it was seen as a massive achievement. They were one of the favourites to go back down. But, Ivan Toney’s 12 goal-haul and the league-high 80 successful tackles from defensive duo Christian Norgaard and Rico Henry prolonged The Bees’ stay at the highest level of English football.
Manager Thomas Franck will feel confident that his team has what it takes to repeat or even better their last season’s performance. With several key players signing new deals and moving to a new stadium, the morale around Brentford is at an all-time high.
The team took notes from their last season’s injury crisis and decided to strengthen their squad with the signings of Keane Lewis-Potter, Aaron Hickey, Thomas Strakosha, and Ben Mee. Brentford will miss the experience of Christian Eriksen in the middle of the park. As things stand, the midfield appears to be the biggest vulnerability of the team.
Draw @ 3.90
Preseason results indicate none of the teams are in very good shape at the moment. Injuries to Kristoffer Ajer and Ethan Pinnock will leave Brentford understaffed at the back, but the inconsistent form of the Leicester frontline leads top football betting tips experts to believe the match will end in a draw.
Draw @ 3.90