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Leicester's deadly duo set to repeat heroics

The Scout 11 Aug 2016
Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, Leicester

When deciding captains, the Scout says Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez cannot be ignored

Leicester City look to have the perfect opportunity to open their defence of the Premier League title with a win in Saturday's early kick-off.

Desperate to bounce back from last weekend’s Community Shield defeat by Manchester United, Claudio Ranieri’s men go to the KCOM Stadium to face a Hull City team with several problems.

Still to appoint a manager since the summer departure of Steve Bruce, the Tigers are also deprived through injuries of their first-choice goalkeeper, Allan McGregor, and two of their regular back four, Michael Dawson and Moses Odubajo.

This appears to leave them vulnerable to a Foxes outfit that won more away matches than any side in 2015/16, as Ranieri’s penchant for hitting on the counter-attack earned 11 victories on the road. 

Leicester’s total of 33 away goals was bettered only by Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur (34 apiece), with Riyad Mahrez (£9.5m) and Jamie Vardy (£10.m) vital to that success.

The top-scoring player in Fantasy Premier League last season, Mahrez netted 12 of his 17 strikes away from home, while Vardy, whose total of 211 points was bettered only by his Algerian team-mate, scored 10 goals on his travels.

Both players have served notice of their intentions in recent summer fixtures. Mahrez netted a stunning solo goal in a friendly win over Celtic and Vardy notched the Foxes’ leveler against United at Wembley.

Owned by 25.8% and 21.8% of FPL managers respectively, Mahrez and Vardy could offer alternative captains to more popular picks such as Sergio Aguero (£13.0m) and Zlatan Ibrahimovic (£11.5m) this weekend.

The pair are also strong contenders for home encounters against Swansea City and Burnley in the first five outings, though a Gameweek 2 visit from Arsenal and trip to Liverpool in Gameweek 4 suggest that their FPL owners could be inclined to look elsewhere for their skipper over those fixtures.

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