Chelsea are this seasons English Premiership football Champions. Congratulations! But other than Chelsea fans, who else will really be celebrating? In 10, 20 years time, who will remember this achievement? Does it really stand out?
Now last season we all remember Leicester City winning the league at pre season odds of 5000-1. And we`ll still probably remember that for decades to come. It was also celebrated around the world by football fans.
Leicester winning the league represented different things to many people. Winning against the odds. The `little` team beating the `big` teams. The underdog can win. The reward for team spirit, a never-say-die attitude. A team that was assembled for less than £25 million. It meant `everyone` competing had a chance at glory.
I think we all love a great underdog story. Buster Douglas knocking out Mike Tyson; Unseeded 17 year old Boris Becker winning Wimbledon; Ali winning the Heavyweight title back in 1974 against George Foreman in The Rumble in The Jungle; Unknown John Daly winning the 1991 USPGA. There are so many.
There`s no doubt Chelsea deserved the title. Helped no less by the diminutive midfield player N`golo Kante, who the previous season, was a title winner with Leicester. Cost to the West London club – £30 million. There`s irony.
So does this represent a return to the status quo for footballs elite teams? Chelsea, Manchester United & City, Spurs, Arsenal & Liverpool. Are those money rich clubs in a league of their own? Possibly. Look at previous league and cup winners and it would appear so.
You wouldn`t get 5000-1 on any of those teams winning the league next season and apart from those teams, who else would you put your money on? Leicester’s extraordinary title win was labelled a `one off` which it might well be. After all, underdogs are exactly that. Little teams are, exactly that. If they win too much they cease to be underdogs.
So, however well deserved, Chelsea’s` league triumph was, it will not go down in the annuls of history as remarkable. It has not met with universal admiration. And is not particularly inspiring.
I should declare at this point I am a Leicester City fan and bare no sour grapes. I`m also a football fan and a sports fan. I was immensely proud of my team last season and also the effect it had on people. For one thing I`ve never seen so many Leicester City shirts in my small rural village.
`Chelsea` John & wife
Leicester City Standing Out