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The Story of Tamworth Local Lad Marc Albrighton

Thursday Aug 27, 2020

 Apart from four games on loan with Wigan Athletic in 2013, Marc Albrighton has spent his entire footballing life based locally to his birthplace and hometown of Tamworth.

 This graduate of the Aston Villa academy got his first-team debut under Martin O’Neill in a UEFA Cup tie in 2009. Albrighton’s Premier League bow soon followed later that year.


 Villa Park is just 15 miles from Tamworth FC’s Lamb Ground but, after racking up 101 appearances and serving four different managers at the Birmingham based club, he was released at the end of his contract in the summer of 2014.
 Albrighton made a free transfer to nearby Leicester City and the rest, they say, is history. Nigel Pearson had a newly promoted side short on Premier League experience, so signing wide midfielder Albrighton for nothing made sense. The King Power Stadium side stayed up but changed their coach.

 It was under the next Foxes manager, Claudio Ranieri, that the footballing miracle occurred. Unfancied rank outsiders at 5000/1, Leicester defied the odds and lifted the Premier League title in 2015-16 with Albrighton an ever-present after playing in all 38 games of that campaign.


 While that makes for an obvious career highlight, a more personal one is scoring the Foxes’ first-ever Champions League goal the following season away to Club Bruges. Albrighton and Leicester haven’t reached such dizzying heights again since, but came closest last season.

 Current Foxes and former Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers – among the footballing impressions done by MansionBet ambassador Darren Farley – steered the team to a fifth place in the Premier League. Leicester are 9/4 on their sportsbook to repeat their top-six finish again next term.

 The Foxes just ran out of steam in their bid to secure a return to the Champions League. If Rodgers can keep his current squad together, however, then odds of 6/1 for a top four finish in 2020-21 look generous given the disappointing Premier League campaigns clubs like Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur just had.

 Albrighton was one the bright prospect but, now aged 30, is competing with younger talent in the East Midlands. Great players like N’Golo Kante and Riyad Mahrez have come and gone from the King Power, but these days it is James Maddison, Demarai Gray and Harvey Barnes giving Rodgers the nice problem of who to pick on the flanks.

 While it is fair to say those names may be more exciting going forward, none have yet developed the tactical discipline that Albrighton has demonstrated. His contract with Leicester runs for another two years which coincides with the end of his prime.

 However, Albrighton is far from done with the Foxes just yet. Rodgers leads the team into the Europa League group stage of 2020-21 and will need to make full use of his squad as he juggles both those commitments and the domestic campaign.
 That is where a seasoned pro like Albrighton comes in. It may seem strange to think of him as a senior player, but that’s exactly what he is now alongside Foxes goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, club captain Wes Morgan, left back Christian Fuchs and prolific striker Jamie Vardy. The boy from Tamworth has certainly done good.

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