Leicester five points from glory as Riyad Mahrez is honoured
Pressure on Spurs after stunning victory over Swansea leaves Foxes on brink of Premier League title
Leicester 4 Swansea 0
Anything Tottenham Hotspur can do, so can Leicester. That was the Foxes' message on Sunday, as they thrashed Swansea City 4-0 at the King Power Stadium just six days after Spurs hammered Stoke by a similar scoreline.
The victory leaves Leicester eight points clear of Tottenham with three games remaining and the pressure is back on the north Londoners as they prepare to host West Bromwich Albion this evening.
Should Spurs lose, then Leicester could clinch the title on Sunday - at Old Trafford, of all places.
In a season when football has seen a changing of the guard, it would be fitting if Claudio Ranieri and his men won their first Premier League crown at Manchester United, the club who have dominated English football in the last 25 years.
What made Sunday's result all the more remarkable was that Leicester crushed Swansea without their top scorer of the season. Jamie Vardy looked on from the stands as he began a ban for his dismissal against West Ham the previous weekend and the man who has netted 22 goals this season must have been mighty impressed as his team scored four for the first time since beating Sunderland 4-2 on opening day.
Riyad Mahrez, who on Sunday evening was named the PFA Player of the Year, opened the scoring on ten minutes when he punished Ashley Williams's poor clearance with a precision shot past Lukasz Fabianski.
Leonardo Ulloa, deputising for Vardy, made it 2-0 on the half-hour mark, with a header from Danny Drinkwater's free kick, and then got a second on 60 minutes as he beat Fabianski from close range. Substitute Marc Albrighton grabbed a fourth five minutes from time to leave Ranieri purring.
"It was a fantastic performance," said the Leicester boss. "I asked for this kind of performance and I was delighted with Ulloa and [Jeff] Schlupp. They haven't played a lot but I told them, 'Now we need you.'"
Mahrez was "the light" of the Leicester team this season, added Ranieri, but despite such praise, the Algerian had a different reason for their success.
"We are really together with our team spirit and we work for each other," said Mahrez, who was never in doubt that they would cope with the absence of Vardy. "In this team we don't need just one player... Sometimes I score, sometimes Vardy scores and sometimes Leo scores, but we are a team."
Ulloa echoed those sentiments on a day when he epitomised Leicester's "all for one and one for all" approach. "We played so well," he said. "We miss Jamie Vardy because he is a good player, but we can still play well and I enjoy playing with this team and with these team-mates. I am always ready to play when I can help the team and I always work for this."