Leicester City secured back-to-back victories on Saturday afternoon, and in doing so gave them renewed optimism they can avoid relegation.
It appeared to be a case of ‘two plus Leicester’ in regards to who would suffer the drop this season, after the Foxes failed to build on a memorable 5-3 win against Manchester United and embarked on a run of 13 matches without collecting a single victory. They ended this with a win at Hull City in December, and which led to a 2-2 draw at Liverpool and a home win against Aston Villa.
Six defeats and two draws followed, but it could prove to be a fruitful April after they started the month with a 2-1 win against West Ham United last weekend. And they followed this up with a dramatic 3-2 triumph at West Bromwich Albion on Saturday afternoon, a match in which they trailed twice before a last-minute Jamie Vardy goal gave the visitors a hugely important three points.
Nigel Pearson’s side remain rooted to the foot of the Premier League table, but they are now just two points from safety. They also have the advantage of having a game in hand over many of their rivals, albeit this is against title favourites Chelsea at the King Power Stadium, but the manager will look at these past two wins and hope they will provide his players with added confidence.
“I believe we can avoid relegation, but there is still work to do,” he told Sky Sports. “Back-to-back wins at this stage are very important and we’ve got to try and make it three now. We’ve probably used up all our indifferent spells. We’ve had a tough season in many ways but I can’t do anything other than praise the way we got back into the game, but it’s back to making sure we try and sustain this revival.”
There will be genuine optimism that the Foxes can record their seventh win of the campaign next weekend, when Swansea City are the visitors. Garry Monk’s side are enjoying an impressive season and currently sit in eighth position, but they have lost some of their threat with the sale of Wilfried Bony to Manchester City during the January transfer window, and this will likely be felt even more at the weekend as Bafetimbi Gomis is expected to be absent with a hamstring injury.