Intended position of guardian writers 9th (NB: this is not necessarily Michael Butler’s prediction but the average of our editors’ predictions)
Ranking last season 8th
Odds of winning the league (via Oddschecker) 200-1
After last year’s difficult season ended in eighth place, it’s a huge campaign for Leicester City. Are they re-emerging as a challenger for Europe or are they continuing to slip back into the stress-free comfort of mid-table mediocrity? Remember that just over a year ago, with much of the same squad and manager, they missed out on the chance to qualify for the Champions League on the final day of the 2020-21 season.
Injuries hurt them last year – key players such as Jamie Vardy, Wesley Fofana, James Justin, Jonny Evans and Ricardo Pereira were all among those who missed big chunks of the season – and while he didn’t There have been no summer additions yet, a fully-Fit Foxes can hurt any team, as Liverpool discovered after Christmas.
However, frustration lurks. Leicester were knocked out of the Europa League in the group stage and, despite being FA Cup holders, were completely outclassed by East Midlands neighbors Nottingham Forest in the fourth round, losing 4- 1. The Europa Conference League semi-final, where they were beaten by eventual winners Roma, brought some comfort to Brendan Rodgers, who found himself under pressure at the end of Leicester’s season .
The reliance on James Maddison is considerable. No one in the squad comes close to the 30 direct goal contributions (18 goals, 12 assists) the No.10 has made for City in all competitions, while it will be interesting to see if Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall continues to progress after his great breakthrough season.