Former Leicester City midfielder Yuki Abe says their outstanding consistency during 2015-16 was the foundation of their remarkable Premier League title win.
Widely expected to be battling relegation this season, the Foxes have confounded the critics by romping to a maiden top-flight triumph in stunning fashion.
Under the shrewd guidance of Claudio Ranieri and aided by the individual brilliance of the likes of Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy, Leicester have made a mockery of the Premier League’s established powerhouses.
And Abe, who spent 18 months at the King Power Stadium between 2010 and 2012, says Leicester’s form throughout the campaign means their success should come as no surprise to anyone.
“They were promoted to the Premier League a few years ago and they managed to survive the relegation battle and stayed up in the league in the last moment,” the former Japan international told Omnisport.
“And at the beginning of the new season, they got a new manager Claudio Ranieri. And yes it’s a surprising result.
“They didn’t have that much of expectation as the odds were like 5,000-1, which everyone’s making a fuss about. If you take these things into a consideration, it’s surprising.
“But, while the favourites couldn’t keep their top form, Leicester had consistency throughout the season. So if judging from their form and consistency, I think it maybe is not that surprising.”
When asked what he felt was the secret behind Leicester’s triumph, Abe replied: “They stuck with their own style against any team.
“I think it was good for them not to change it until the end. Even though they can have possession occasionally in the game, they stick to quick counter-attack and they also made the most of great individual players. And their defence. Every player can work hard for the team.
“And they eventually achieved clean sheets with that solidarity. People could see and feel their determination for it.”