Leicester City‘s 2015-16 Premier League title win is arguably the most remarkable in history. Claudio Ranieri’s men began the season as 5,000/1 outsiders, and according to bookmakers at the time there was more chance of Elvis Presley being alive than there was of the Foxes bringing home the trophy.
In comparison to their big spending rivals, Leicester’s squad cost just £72 million (seven times less than the £415m Man City spent on theirs at the time), while they had finished 14th in the Premier League the previous season. But, after they took top spot in mid-January, they left the chasing pack trailing in their wake to claim the first title in their 132-year history with two games to spare after second-placed Tottenham Hotspur drew 2-2 at Chelsea.
In the end, Leicester finished 10 points clear of Spurs as they cemented their place in history. Ranieri used the fewest number of players in the top flight and built around a core group who are now household names. It was a season where the Premier League was introduced to the likes of Riyad Mahrez and N’Golo Kante, while Jamie Vardy finished the season with 24 goals.
Where are the players and managers now?
GK: Kasper Schmeichel: He is still Leicester’s first-choice goalkeeper and the club’s vice-captain. The 33-year-old, who is the son of Man United legend Peter, has started each of their 29 Premier League games this season before the coronavirus pandemic saw them postponed.
GK: Mark Schwarzer: The Australian retired after leaving Leicester at the end of the 2015-16 season, drawing a line under a career that saw him win 109 caps for the Socceroos and play over 600 times domestically. He is now working as a media pundit.
GK: Ben Hamer: Hamer spent a short time on loan at both Nottingham Forest and Bristol City during the title winning season but left Leicester for Huddersfield Town on a free transfer in June 2018. He is now on a season-long loan at Derby County in the Championship where he has kept four clean sheets in 20 games.
DEF: Wes Morgan: The 36-year-old is still Leicester’s club captain and is set to sign a new one-year deal keeping him at the Foxes until the end of next season.
DEF: Robert Huth: Huth left Leicester on a free transfer in 2018, after missing the entirety of the 2017-18 campaign due to ankle and foot injuries. He was linked with moves to Derby and Stoke City but retired on Jan. 11, 2019. He’s now studying for an MSc in Sports Directorship with VSI.
DEF: Christian Fuchs: The left-back is still a key figure at Leicester but his contract is up at the end of this season. He also runs a PR company, The Fox Soccer Academy (in Warwick, New York), and the NoFuchsGiven eSports academy team. There’s no sign yet that the 34-year-old will be embarking on the NFL kicking career he craves though.
DEF: Danny Simpson: Simpson was starting right-back in the Premier League-winning side but was released by Leicester in June 2019. He signed for Huddersfield Town last September and has made 24 appearances so far.
DEF: Ritchie De Laet: The Belgian started the 2015-16 season as first choice before losing his place to Simpson, after which the club sent on loan to Middlesbrough in February. He landed promotion with Boro and won the title with Leicester that season but left the club in the summer for a £2.1m move to Aston Villa. He then had spells on loan at Royal Antwerp and Melbourne City, and the 31-year-old signed a permanent deal at his hometown club Antwerp last June.
DEF: Marcin Wasilewski: He left Leicester in 2017, having made four league appearances in their title-winning year, and was signed by Wisla Krakow in his native Poland, November 2017. At 39, he’s still playing for the club and has made 12 appearances this term.
DEF: Yohan Benalouane: The Tunisia defender left halfway through the 2015-16 season for a loan spell at Fiorentina, but endured a tough time with injuries. He was originally left out of the Leicester league squad the following season but was added back in January 2017, eventually leaving the Foxes for Nottingham Forest in January 2019 after 29 appearances.
ESPN’s James Olley understands Chelsea have stepped up interest in signing Ben Chilwell from Leicester.
DEF: Ben Chilwell: Regarded as one of England‘s best left-backs, Chilwell is a key player at Leicester but is rumoured to be on a number of the top Premier League club’s radar this summer. He was just 20 years old when Leicester won the title, but he’s enjoying a superb season under Brendan Rodgers and clubs will need to part with around £80m if they want to prize him away.
DEF: Liam Moore: Moore spent the second half of 2015-16 on loan at Bristol City and left Leicester that summer for Reading, where the 27-year-old is club captain in the Championship.
MID: Daniel Amartey: The defensive midfielder is still at Leicester after joining the club midway through their Premier League-winning campaign. However, he broke his ankle in October 2018 against West Ham and has failed to get back into the side — a place on the bench for a League Cup game against Luton Town last September the closest he has come to a return. Unlikely to stay, his agent Yussif Alhassan Chibsah said in May that the 25-year-old will be looking for new opportunities this summer.
MID: Matty James: The former Man United graduate missed the entire 2015-16 campaign after rupturing his anterior ligaments. He joined Barnsley on loan in January 2017 and got his first Leicester start in over two years in August 2017. He is still at the club but has only made a handful of appearances in recent years.
MID: Danny Drinkwater: Second on Bill Barnwell’s list of the worst all-time Premier League signings when he left to join Chelsea for £34m in August 2017, he failed to make an impact and has had a nomadic career since he won the title. The 30-year-old was loaned to Burnley in August 2019 and is now on loan at Aston Villa until the end of the season.
MID: N’Golo Kante: Kante is regarded as one of the world’s best midfielders. He left Leicester for Chelsea in the summer of 2016 for a bargain fee of £32m and immediately won another Premier League title in 2016-17, followed by the FA Cup in 2017-18 and the Europa League in 2018-19. Of course he also won the 2018 World Cup with France.
MID: Gokhan Inler: The Switzerland midfielder only made five appearances in Leicester’s title-winning season after joining from Napoli the previous summer for £6.3m. He left in June 2016 for Turkish club Besiktas and joined rivals Istanbul Basaksehir on a free transfer in 2017.
MID: Dean Hammond: He spent most of the 2015-16 season on loan at Sheffield United and would go on to sign for them on a free transfer in June 2016. However, the midfielder left soon after, went on trial at Coventry City and returned to Leicester in a player-coach capacity, running out for their U21 side. At 37, he signed for Worthing in March 2020 but is yet to make an appearance for the seventh tier side.
MID: Tom Lawrence: Lawrence was on loan at Blackburn and Cardiff City in the 2015-16 season and joined Derby on a permanent deal in August 2017. He was arrested alongside teammate Mason Bennett in September 2019 on suspicion of drink-driving and pleaded guilty in October 2019. They were given 12-month community orders and 180 hours of unpaid work, and a two-year driving ban.
MID: Andy King: The 31-year-old’s contract is up at the end of the season, but he has already cemented his place in the club’s history. As Leicester’s current longest serving player (since 2006), after the title triumph he has been on loan at Swansea, Derby County, Rangers, and is now with Huddersfield Town.
FW: Marc Albrighton: One of the club’s true stalwarts, Albrighton has made 21 appearances this season for Leicester. He now has Ayoze Perez challenging him for a spot in the first team, but having joined Leicester on a free in July 2014, the 30-year-old must go down as one of the best bits of business in Premier League history.
FW: Riyad Mahrez: After playing a starring role in the title win, the brilliant winger eventually left for Manchester City in a £60m move in July 2018 and won the league under Pep Guardiola that season. He has scored 21 goals in 81 games for City to date and also helped Algeria to the 2019 African Cup of Nations title.
FW: Jeffrey Schlupp: The versatile left-sided player signed for Crystal Palace in January 2017 in a deal worth a reported £12.5m. He has made 14 league appearances for the Eagles this term.
FW: Demarai Gray: Winger Gray arrived from Birmingham for £3.5m halfway through that memorable 2015-16 campaign and is still at the club, making 21 appearances so far this term.
FW: Nathan Dyer: Dyer was on loan at Leicester for the 2015-16 season and then returned to his parent club Swansea. He is still at the Championship side and is a regular in their first team.
ST: Shinji Okazaki: Okazaki was Robin to Jamie Vardy’s Batman during the title-winning campaign, and as a result he was crowned Asian Player of the Year in December 2016. In June 2019, Leicester released Okazaki, who signed for Malaga. Incredibly his contract was ripped up after 34 days over a wage dispute, and the 34-year-old is now at Spanish Segunda Division team Huesca.
ST: Jamie Vardy: Linked with moves to Arsenal and Chelsea after his title heroics, Vardy is still banging in the goals for Leicester (19 and counting this season), putting him at the top of the scoring charts. He scored a hat trick in Leicester’s 9-0 demolition of Southampton back in October.
– Wright Thompson: Lifting a pint at Vardy’s old pub
ST: Leonardo Ulloa: Ulloa made 29 appearances for Leicester in the 2015-16 campaign and chipped in with key goals. He left Leicester for Mexico‘s CF Pachuca in August 2018 and then joined Spanish side Rayo Vallecano in September 2019. He is out injured after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in training.
ST: Andrej Kramaric: The Croatian missed the fun as he was loaned out halfway through the 2015-16 campaign to Hoffenheim, joining them on a permanent deal in June 2016 for a reported £9.9m. He was a key player for Croatia during the 2018 World Cup and came off the bench in the final to play the last 19 minutes. He’s still a mainstay at Hoffenheim and has seven goals in 15 games this season.
ST: Joe Dodoo: The striker made one league appearance for Leicester in 2015-16 and joined Rangers on a free in July 2016. He was then loaned out to Charlton and Blackpool and, after leaving Rangers by mutual consent in September 2019, he signed for Bolton Wanderers on a free.
Manager: Claudio Ranieri: Despite guiding Leicester to the greatest achievement in their history, Ranieri was sacked the following February, just nine months after winning the Premier League. When he was shown the door, Leicester were just one point above the relegation zone with 13 games left. “The board reluctantly feels that a change of leadership, while admittedly painful, is necessary in the club’s greatest interest,” said the club statement at the time.
Leicester appointed Craig Shakespeare as caretaker manager and eventually finished that season in 12th. Ranieri would go on to have a nomadic managerial journey with spells at Nantes, Fulham and Roma. He is now in charge of Serie A side Sampdoria, who are sat 16th in the table.