Leicester spent 567 DAYS in the top four of the Premier League for two seasons without making it to the Champions League
Leicester has spent more time in the top four of the Premier League than any other team over the past two seasons, but neither has managed to secure Champions League football.
The Foxes have held a top four spot for a whopping 567 days over the past two seasons, but have only gone on to take consecutive fifth places under manager Brendan Rodgers.
Incredibly, their time in the Champions League places is more than three times the total of Manchester United, which has only been in the top four for 178 days, but finished third last season and third in the current season.
Leicester was devastated on Sunday after missing the Champions League again
A Leicester fan, with a Europa League badge on his arm, looks forward to another season without Champions League football after the 4-2 defeat to Tottenham on the last day
SEASON 2020-21 – TIME IN TOP FOUR
Leicester City – 242 (Finish position: 5th)
Manchester United – 156 (2nd)
Liverpool – 140 (3rd)
Manchester City – 131 (1st)
Chelsea – 103 (4th)
Everton – 63 (10th)
Tottenham Hotspur – 58th (7th)
Aston Villa – 32 (11th)
Arsenal – 29 (8th)
West Ham United – 27th (6th)
Southampton – 22nd (15th)
Newcastle United – 7th (12th)
Crystal Palace – 2 (14th)
Leeds United – 2nd (9)
Wolverhampton Wanderers – 2nd (13th)
Manchester City, despite their dominant title-winning season this time, and 19 points ahead of Leicester in the 2019/20 season, have also had only 483 days in the top four compared to Leicester’s 567.
Chelsea, meanwhile, have also hit back-to-back top-four finishes despite 385 days above, while Liverpool’s total is 493 – the closest to Leicester, but still an incredible 74 days short of Rodgers’ side.
This season, Leicester looked to be sure to finish in the Champions League places, even having a seven-point lead in fifth place after 29 games of the campaign.
At that stage, the Foxes were third and 10 points ahead of seventh seed Liverpool, but due to several fortunes in the last seven games of the season, Jurgen Klopp’s side eventually jumped over them and finished three points ahead on Sunday.
Leicester faced Manchester United, Chelsea and Tottenham in their last three matches, beating the former at Old Trafford, but losing their last two.
Before that, defeats against Newcastle and West Ham, as well as a draw against Southampton and their rivals’ excellent form, all contributed to their failure to secure the position they needed.
There are now question marks as to whether it can be viewed as a positive campaign for Rodgers’ side.
They obviously beat Chelsea at Wembley to win the FA Cup, but the Champions League financial benefits are so great that many fans may feel they would have preferred a place in the top four.
Jurgen Klopp meanwhile celebrated after he managed to send Liverpool to third place
Chelsea lost to Aston Villa, but Leicester’s slip-up meant they made it into the top four on Sunday
Leicester is now looking forward to a Europa League campaign for the second season in a row
SEASON 2019-20 – TIME IN TOP FOUR
Liverpool – 353 (Finish position: 1st)
Manchester City – 352 (2nd)
Leicester City – 325 (5th)
Chelsea – 282 (4th)
Arsenal – 39 (8th)
Manchester United – 22 (3rd)
Crystal Palace – 15 (14th)
Brighton and Hove Albion – 9th (15th)
Tottenham Hotspur – 8th (6th)
Bournemouth – 3rd (18th)
West Ham United – 2nd (16th)
Aston Villa – 1st (17th)
Burnley – 1st (10th)
Instead, they will compete in the Europa League for another season and go again in 2021-22 to try to correct the mistakes of the past two campaigns.
2019/20 ended in much the same way, with back-to-back defeats to Tottenham and Manchester United sealing their fate and taking them to fifth place in the competition.
Before that, it was the defeats against Everton and Bournemouth that contributed to their choking and falling out of the top four.
Last season in particular, the numbers were bad for the Foxes, having spent an incredible 325 days in the top four only to drop out at the last minute.
To put that in perspective, Manchester United finished third and had only been in the top four for a total of 22 days.
Liverpool, the runaway winners of the competition – finishing with 99 points – spent just 28 days longer than the Foxes in the top four, clearly showing the disaster that unfolded and left them wallowing in fifth place.
Of course Leicester has come a long way from their championship days and having won the league in 2015-16 it was a rollercoaster decade for the Midlands.
But now that their fans have tasted the joys of the Champions League, there is certainly a desperate desire to get back there.
Rodgers will likely stay at King Power Stadium next season … so, after two seasons of falling on the final hurdle, will it be lucky for the third time in their attempt to return to the Champions League?
Leicester has been in the top four three times as many days as United in the past two seasons
Manchester City also spent less time in the top four than Leicester despite winning the title
Gareth Bale scored twice on Sunday to end Leicester’s hopes for a top four spot