Why Spurs, Not Leicester, Are the Romantics’ Choice for the Premier League Title
With Leicester City on the verge of completing a sensational Premier League title win, we look at why true romantics would rather have seen Spurs win it
So that’s that. With Spurs’ 1-1 draw against West Brom, the title race is effectively over. Leicester need just three points to confirm an unthinkable Premier League crown.Whilst they face a difficult task against Louis van Gaal’s United on Sunday, they’re almost certain to bring the championship to the King Power Stadium for the first time in their history.
Nobody can deny that this will be remembered as a majestic campaign for underdogs. Leicester, Spurs, and to a certain extent even Arsenal were written off as title contenders at the start of this footballing calendar. They’ve all profited from the failures of rudderless Manchester and Chelsea sides, with the latter sure to regard this season as their annus horribulus. The pundits will serenade us about Leicester’s title win being a glorious and romantic achievement, David’s heroic victory over the Premiership’s petrodollar Goliaths.
Except that the real romantics would have been hoping for a Tottenham title.
Let me explain. I am in no way trying to detract from the magnificent achievements of Mahrez, Vardy and co. Leicester have been rightful winners in a campaign where they have shown grit and quality, not to mention some stonking performances including the annihilation of Manchester City 3-0 at Eastlands. They deserve it.
But let’s be clear – this is an anomaly, something they could never have thought themselves close to achieving at the beginning of the season. The odds against them repeating this year’s heroics next season are small, if not non-existent.
The Foxes haven’t had to deal with the pain of underachievement because, as even their own fans would probably admit, Leicester were very much a club operating at its own level until this year. They haven’t ever been a ‘big club’ in the traditional sense, and this championship will be regarded as a completely unexpected surprise rather than the righting of a historical wrong.
Spurs are different. They’ve finished below Arsenal every year in the Premier League since it began. They’ve looked on as their more illustrious Islington neighbours dominated English football at the turn of the millennium, only to then see Chelsea lay their claim as London’s best soon after. Spurs have always been the bridesmaid in lilywhite dresses throughout the life of the Premier League. They’ve suffered the pain, and the pleasure of a League title and the subsequent finish over the Gunners would have been the perfect salve for years of hurt and football misery.
That’s why, when Wes Morgan lifts the Premiership trophy in the next few days or weeks, real football romantics will feel a twinge of regret for those on the Seven Sisters Road who, once again, will have to look on from the sidelines. Spurs’ suffering will continue and, like the champions-elect, the odds of them mounting a similar challenge next year are small. Not with Guardiola, Mourinho, and Klopp breathing down their necks.
On both sides of North London, then, this is a campaign that will be viewed with regret.
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