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PFA chief wants Leicester stars to be knighted

Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) chief executive Gordon Taylor believes all of Leicester City’s players deserve to be awarded knighthoods for their remarkable season.

Claudio Ranieri and Co. defied incredible odds to claim the Premier League title this season, just 12 months after they were locked in a fierce battle for survival in the top-tier competition. 

Tottenham’s 2-2 draw at Chelsea on Monday confirmed Leicester’s status as champions with two games remaining after the Foxes led the way for the majority of the campaign.

Now, Taylor wants to ensure the Leicester stars such as Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez and N’Golo Kante are rewarded for their unparalleled achievement. 

“It goes beyond football what they’ve done,” the 71-year-old told the Daily Mail. 

“It remains to be seen if the choice to add them to the honours list comes from The Cabinet, but I would hope so. 

“As football goes it’s probably, in my lifetime, one of the finest achievements I’ve seen. 

“Special success stories come from different areas of life. Leicester have shown that sport and football are a very important part of the fabric of this country. 

“They give hope to any team who think they can never make it to top.”

Taylor added: “For the PFA Player of the Year Riyad Mahrez to have gone from the French Ligue 2, to failing in a trial at St Mirren, to show the resilience and belief to become the Premier League’s best player. 

“For Vardy to get released by Sheffield Wednesday, go to Stocksbridge Park Steels to Halifax Town and Fleetwood, to go on trial at Crewe and not be taken on, then suddenly he achieves the record of consecutive Premier League goals and is one of the country’s leading scorers.

“For Kasper Schmeichel to live and play under the shadow of his father, Peter — it’s never easy to be a famous footballer’s son. There are inspirational stories from every team member, I could name them all.

“They deserve all the credit they can get. The sum of their whole is so much greater than the individuals. That’s what football and life is all about — being a team.”

Thu 5 May, 2016
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