Icon Books is to publish the first book on the "incredible" story of Leicester City's 2015-16 Premier League season, by Leicester Mercury's chief football writer Rob Tanner.
Leicester City FC – a team facing relegation a year ago and who had odds of 5000-1 to finish top of the table at the start of this season – is currently the Premier League leader.
5000-1: The Leicester City Story is Tanner’s diary of this "astonishing season as it happened", recounting the "growing sense of hope and disbelief as the Foxes close in on the most remarkable underdog story in the history of the Premier League".
With "unrivalled" access to players, staff and fans, Tanner charts Leicester City’s "remarkable" turnaround from facing relegation in March 2015 to the "most unlikely" of title challengers in 2016. The story begins with the "explosive final months of Nigel Pearson’s tenure as manager and the surprise appointment of his successor Claudio Ranieri. It will also chart the loss of Leicester's "talismanic" midfielder Esteban Cambiasso to the 89th-minute winning goal against Norwich in February 2016 and the "slaying of Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester City and the other big beasts of the league as Leicester ascend towards undreamt-of glory".
"With insider access, Tanner’s book will be the first to tell the full tale, the dream of anyone who has ever supported an underdog team, in a story to rival Michael Lewis’s Moneyball (WW Norton) – or as a 21st century Fever Pitch", the publisher has said.
Tanner said: "The last year has been unreal for Leicester City. To move in 12 short months from likely relegation to – dare I whisper it – sight of victory and billing amongst the greatest clubs in Europe – is the stuff of fairytales. ‘Rollercoaster ride’ doesn’t come close. I’ve been writing about football and about Leicester for years and I’m thrilled that, with Icon’s help, this story which I’ve followed from kick to kick, will make it onto bookshop shelves."
Icon Books sports editor Michael Sells said: "Leicester City's story has captured the imagination of football supporters everywhere. The widespread feeling of goodwill towards their cause has grown week on week, as has the belief that this might just be about to happen. I’ve loved following Rob's coverage of this bizarre season and I’m delighted that we’ll be publishing his wide-eyed yet insightful account of Leicester’s campaign. This is a very welcome reminder that even big-money football can still produce the shocks that keep fans of clubs outside the traditional top-four coming back each year in hope."
5000-1: The Leicester City Story – Hope and Disbelief in the Premier League’s Greatest-Ever Season will be published by Icon Books on 7th July, priced at £8.99.