The odd couple
Act that has got ASA McCOY on the unlikely double direction Leicester City moving in the right
Foxes’ Vardy and Cambiasso
MAY 22, 2010 – The Bernabeu, Madrid. Esteban Cambiasso, under the guidance of Jose Mourinho, sits there in the blue and black of Inter Milan, ready to compete for Europe’s biggest prize in the Champions League final.
He goes through his last minute preparations with only German giants Bayern Munich standing between him and a Champions League winners’ medal.
The Argentine gets the better of Mark van Bommel and Bastian Schweinsteiger on the day whilst compatriot Diego Milito scores a brace to give Cambiasso the title of European champion.
Meanwhile, in South Yorkshire, Jamie Vardy has just completed his final season with Stocksbridge Park Steels. He has just turned down short-term contract offers from Crewe Alexandra and Rotherham United and is on the verge of signing for FC Halifax Town. The Sheffield-born striker’s career is about to take off more than he ever imagined and in a couple of years he will end up with Cambiasso at Leicester City, albeit via very different routes.
February 22, 2015, Goodison Park, Liverpool – 1,737 days after Cambiasso became a European champion.
Danny Simpson’s deep cross was spilt by Toffees keeper Tim Howard and the ball landed at the feet of Vardy.
After waiting for the right moment, his ball was swept home by an advancing Cambiasso to put City 2-1 up in a vital clash which eventually ended 2-2.
Cambiasso’s passionate celebration included an embrace with Vardy – quite incredible given their differing circumstances five years earlier.
The two now play side by side at the King Power Stadium and undertook a key role in attempting to preserve Leicester’s Premier League status.
Over the past two seasons,Vardy has built himself a cult following amongst City fans. His work-rate will always go down well with a team struggling at the bottom.
Nigel Pearson agrees – with Vardy currently keeping ‘the saviour’ Andrej Kramaric out of the side.
Vardy has often been overlooked this season, probably due to better technical forwards being available to Pearson.
But later, with City in a perilous position in the Premier League, Pearson realised that the Foxes had to start playing to their strengths.