League leaders Chelsea can go within striking distance of claiming the Premier League title should they pick up a win against Leicester tonight, as they would then require just 3 more points which they can claim in front of their home fans when they face Crystal Palace on Sunday.
Jose Mourinho will be eager to wrap up the title after Arsenal’s resurgence in 2015, but Leicester will prove a difficult challenge. Leicester currently sit 1 point adrift the drop zone and will be desperate to pick up as many points as possible in the remaining games. Nigel Pearson’s side will have their tails up after impressively winning their previous 4 games, seeing them rise from the bottom of the table to their current place just outside the danger zone.
Both managers have made the headlines this week and they will both have a point to prove come kickoff at the King Power Stadium. There were suggestions made that Pearson would field a weaker side so that his team would be fully fit for Saturday’s crunch match against Newcastle, but Pearson has angrily refuted these claims and therefore you can expect a full strength squad to face the league leaders.
Mourinho meanwhile has once again been criticised for his defensive tactics against the bigger teams, with Arsenal fans claiming that his side is boring after their goalless draw on Sunday. Mourinho has responded in typical fashion, stating “I think boring is 10 years without a title”.
Although these claims will not have an impact on the Portuguese, Chelsea are expected to go and try to win the game tonight and get 1 hand on the Premier League trophy before finishing the task back at Stamford Bridge Sunday lunchtime.
The reverse fixture came just in the second week of the campaign, seeing Nigel Pearson’s men face a huge task very early on in their return to the Premier League. Chelsea scored twice in the second half to secure a 2-0 victory, but Leicester City are now a much more experienced Premier League side and in fine form coming into tonight’s fixture. April has proven to be a fantastic month for the Foxes, seeing them claim 12 huge points from their 4 fixtures.
There is a huge amount at stake for both teams tonight. Although at opposing ends of the table, it should make for a fantastic encounter between one team agonisingly close to claiming the title, and another finding form in the midst of a tough relegation scrap which is likely to go down to the wire.
Jamie Vardy will be assessed for the hosts ahead of kickoff, after he needed a pain-killing injection in his foot at the weekend. Jeffrey Schlupp and David Nugent are also doubts with both suffering calf injuries. Nigel Pearson has Chris Wood available for selection after being recalled from his loan spell at Ipswich.
Loic Remy remains sidelined for the Blues, so Mourinho may risk Diego Costa who has been suffering with a hamstring problem. Oscar is being monitored after his heavy clash with Ospina at the weekend, resulting in the Brazilian requiring hospital treatment.