Marc Albrighton

Marc Albrighton: Season Targets & School Runs

One of three Premier League sides that are yet to suffer defeat so far in 2019/20, and a first start of the campaign, means Marc Albrighton is able to reflect fondly on Leicester City’s August exploits.

Having already featured during the draws with Wolverhampton Wanderers and Chelsea, the 29-year-old was selected in Brendan Rodgers’ starting XI against AFC Bournemouth over the weekend, and he delivered a typically assured display from the right-hand side of midfield.

Replaced on 64 minutes by fellow winger Demarai Gray, Albrighton is still working towards his personal aim of playing from start to finish in a fixture this term, but there was only one target on his mind as the final whistle blew at King Power Stadium on Saturday.

Another victory on the board brought with it a total of eight points from a possible 12, and only the star-studded sides of Liverpool and Manchester City have a better record after four Premier League outings.

“When I got the call to say I was going to be starting against Bournemouth, I was obviously delighted,” Albrighton told LCFC.com. “It’s not nice when you’re having to watch your team-mates instead of being out there yourself.

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Marc Albrighton
Marc Albrighton

The Leicester City No.11 made his first start of the season against AFC Bournemouth.

“From my point of view, I just had to go in there and give the best account of myself as I could. I knew I wouldn’t be perfect, I’ve not completed 90 minutes, not even in pre-season, yet, so I just had to go out there and give everything for as long as I could and hopefully put in a good performance.

“To get the win was important, and to get the early goal gets you off to a good start, so it was a positive day all round.”

The early goal Albrighton made reference to was Jamie Vardy’s stunning lob over Aaron Ramsdale, who like many other Cherries players, he tormented all afternoon on Filbert Way.

“I had quite a good view of it!” said Albrighton of the No.9’s exceptional strike.

"I think any view of that goal was good. We’ve seen him do it before. He’s put balls over goalkeepers before, so he’s certainly got that in his locker. He executed it really well.”

In the last couple of years, we’ve done well against the bigger sides and let ourselves down in the games where we look at it and feel like we should be picking up all three points.

Marc Albrighton LCFC.com

After September’s international break, in which 10 senior City stars could feature for their nations, the Foxes head to Old Trafford to face Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s Manchester United, who haven't won since their convincing triumph against Chelsea on the opening day of the campaign.

“We need to go to places like Old Trafford to win, not going there being overawed by it all,” Albrighton explained. “We’re going there for three points and that’s it.

“The big games against Manchester United away mean nothing if you’re not picking up three points against other teams at home, like we did against Bournemouth.

“They’re always difficult, they’re always going to be tricky, but you’ve got to win those games and that’s where you pick up your points.

“In the last couple of years, we’ve done well against the bigger sides and let ourselves down in the games where we look at it and feel like we should be picking up all three points.

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Marc Albrighton
Marc Albrighton

The winger successfully balances his professional career with fatherhood.

“We’d struggled to break teams down and struggled to get that early goal, and we’ve usually ended up conceding first and chasing the game.

“That puts us in a difficult position, because once you go a goal down in this league, it’s hard to overturn that. I feel like we’ve improved on that, especially towards the back end of last season. The start of this season has gone well, too, so it’s positive signs.”

Hamza Choudhury and Harvey Barnes have joined Ben Chilwell as regulars in City’s side this term to provide the Club’s Academy with a heavy representation in what is regarded as one of the most competitive leagues in the world.

Albrighton, around 40 miles away, went through a similar journey at boyhood club Aston Villa, where just before turn of the century he graduated from their youth set up before making his Premier League debut in August 2009.

“With a few of them coming through in a short space of time – Hamza, Chilly, Harvey – I can relate to when I came through at Aston Villa,” he said. “When I came through, we had probably six or seven players that were in and around the first team that were making debuts and getting in squads.

I do different things, and I’m able to do the school runs which the other two like. It’s not often I can do that, so when I can, I do try and do all that.

Marc Albrighton LCFC.com

“You can see how close they are and it reminds me of when I came through and how close we were as a group. We’d come through so many age groups together and we’d won everything at youth level and reserve level that there was to win. 

“I look back on it very fondly, my time coming through, and I can definitely see similarities of these boys coming through now. They’re very close with each other, they meet each other outside of training, which is always good. To have not only colleagues but friends as well, they’re all pleased to see each other doing well.”

Away from the busy world of professional football, meanwhile, Albrighton’s three daughters keep him occupied when he has time off in the week, and when possible, he takes his two eldest on the school run.

He added: “Before we had our third daughter, most of my days off would be in the week when the kids were at school. It was a bit of peace and quiet and there wasn’t really much to do – I’d go out for lunch or whatever.

“Now, we’ve got the younger one, so we’ll go out for the day and take the dog out for walks. I do different things, and I’m able to do the school runs which the other two like. It’s not often I can do that, so when I can, I do try and do all that.”

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