Leicester go into the final matchday as underdogs in the top four race. They have nothing to lose but everything to gain.
Leicester City host Tottenham hotspur on Sunday. The final match day in Premier League is crucial in the context of Champions League qualification as the third and fourth spot are undecided. Three teams are in the race for the two remaining spots- Chelsea, Liverpool and Leicester City. Leicester are fifth in the points table with 66 points, level on points with fourth placed Liverpool and one point behind Chelsea. Brendan Rodgers needs his side to win their final match and hope either Chelsea or Liverpool falter in their respective fixtures.
Rodgers’ side were in a similar situation last season. They lost three of their last four matches to finish fifth in the points table. This season also Leicester are losing ground in the final few weeks of the league. From being close to second placed Manchester United, they are now struggling to finish in the top four.
Leicester could finish in the top four even if Liverpool win against Crystal Palace if they beat Spurs 5-0 and the Reds win 1-0 against Crystal Palace. Brendan Rodgers has been in similar situation before, when he was at Liverpool in 2014. Liverpool were trying to cut Manchester City’s goal difference down in the title race, but they gave away a three goal lead at Crystal Palace.
Keeping that in mind, Rodgers’ priority would be to win the match first and then think about extending the lead.
“We’ll talk about the different situations that may arise in the game,” Rodgers said. “I think ultimately we set out to win the game. What’s important is that you can’t overcomplicate it.
“For us, if there is a point where we do need a goal, we would want to have something in place for that. However, it’s something where I’ve had an experience before, as you well know, where if you get too emotional and you think you can chase goals, it can go against you.
“The key is to win the game, and get three points. There are very few games where you are going to get five or six goals in the Premier League, so win the game.
“This isn’t a team you can take a massive risk with, just by opening up your whole team. They’ve got players like Harry Kane, Son, they’re fast, they’re dynamic, Moura, Gareth Bale, Dele Alli, they’re talented players, so you can’t just open your team up and think you’ll get away with it.
“Just win the game, be professional, stay focused, and if there is a moment in the game where we need to, or where we can get another goal or can push for another goal, then we’ll be aware of that scenario and we’ll be ready for it.”
The FA Cup champions go into the final matchday as underdogs in the top four race. They have nothing to lose but everything to gain.