Managers largely responsible for Leicester City and Tottenham's upturn in fortunes

Leicester City v Tottenham Hotspur - The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Replay

After Leicester City's last-gasp defeat courtesy of a goal by the returning Danny Welbeck last weekend, daylight between the Foxes and the chasing pack has considerably shrunk, especially so with Tottenham picking up all three points at the Etihad.

At the beginning of this campaign, no one would have suggested Spurs, a team that consistently fails to claim a Champions League place, would win the title, let alone Leicester, who were favourites for relegation last August.

Yet here they are occupying the top two places, with their managers having endured very different fates in the Premier League up to their current success.


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Spurs' Mauricio Pochettino began top-flight life with Southampton and helped the Saints to a strong finish during his first season in charge. The Argentine impressed many with the style of play he enforced and the way he managed a squad that was by no means filled with renowned quality.

Claudio Ranieri, meanwhile, began his career in English football at Chelsea and didn't wholly impress. Earning himself 'The Tinkerman' as a nickname due to his frequent changes personnel, he failed to secure a sustained tenure at Stamford Bridge and headed back to his native country to resurrect his managerial career.

In comparison, both have seen tremendous success this campaign with limited resources.

Both employ very similar strategies; Leicester have made their name with a deadly counter-attacking style through the pace and trickery of Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, whereas Tottenham use a high-intensity approach to shut down and harass their opponents.

Leicester City v Tottenham Hotspur - The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Replay

The speed at which they perform for 90 minutes is mesmerising and a testament to their respective managers, who have worked wonders with arguably lesser squads compared to Arsenal and Manchester City.

The sheer brilliance and mastery shown by Ranieri and Pochettino has compensated for a lack of spending, suggesting money isn't everything when it comes to success - and long may it continue.

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