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Leicester City will travel to the Emirates on Friday night for the Premier League curtain raiser, as they take on Arsenal in the first game of the 2017/18 season.
The Foxes, who finished 12th last time around, thanks to a late revival under new manager Craig Shakespeare will be hoping that they are off the blocks quickly this time around to avoid a similar fate as last season. The club has done decent business in the transfer window, bringing in the likes of Harry Maguire, Vicente Iborra, Eldin Jakupovic and Kelechi Iheanacho and with Riyad Mahrez still at the club, things do look good for Shakespeare’s men.
Leicester will be without two of their regulars in the starting XI, with Robert Huth and Danny Drinkwater ruled out due to ankle and thigh injuries respectively. New signing Iheanacho is a slight doubt after being taken off due to a knock in a pre-season friendly last week, while fellow striker Islam Slimani will also be assessed close to the game, after he picked up a nasty gash on his leg.
Here is how Leicester could line up in the season opener against the Gunners:
Despite numerous speculations, it looks like the Danish stopper is set to stay with the club and will start the season as the first-choice in goal.
The 30-year old has made the right-back spot his own in the past couple of years, and it is unlikely to change for the clash against Arsenal.
The captain did not have the best of the seasons last time around, but he will be hoping to start things off on a positive note against the Gunners.
Having impressed at Hull City last season, it is time for Maguire to step up for the Foxes and live up to the billing. Will partner Morgan at the heart of the defence.
The final slot in the backline will be occupied by Christian Fuchs. The veteran Austrian has been a consistent performer for the club and will look to kick things off in a similar fashion.
The 26-year old has bounced back from injury issues really well and has impressed a great deal in the pre-season. With Drinkwater ruled out, James could be in for his first league start in over a year.
The former Sevilla captain arrived in the summer and his steely nature and solidity will help Leicester stay strong in the middle of the park. Will start as the deepest of the midfield trio.
The 20-year old established himself as a key figure for the club during the final legs of last season. He is certain to occupy the third midfield slot in the starting XI.
With his future still up in the air, Mahrez has shown commendable attitude so far and has been in for praise from teammates for doing so. Should start on the right-hand side of the attacking trident.
The 30-year old will be keen on avoiding a repeat of last season, where he started off slowly. He will want to start firing from the get go this season.
The Leicester team’s workhorse, Marc Albrighton will provide the width down the left-hand side against the North London outfit.