Kasper Schmeichel

Kasper Schmeichel: Leicester City’s No.1

As part of a series looking into Leicester City’s key players, LCFC.com analyses the numbers behind the Foxes’ dependable shot-stopper.
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One of the first names on the Leicester City teamsheet, Kasper Schmeichel has become a symbolic figure in the carving of the Club's recent history. He’s been there from almost the very start of City's recent success, winning promotion from the Championship before lifting the Premier League trophy and has now established himself as one of the top flight’s best goalkeepers. 

The Denmark international also helped the Club reach the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League and starred for his country at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, going on to reach a half-century of international appearances.

Schmeichel has been a near ever-present in each season since City’s promotion from the second tier in 2013/14. In total, he’s turned out 330 times in league competitions for Leicester.

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He’s twice featured in every game of the season - both when Leicester won the Premier League in 2015/16, and also in 2018/19. And the shot-stopper’s 29 appearances this season is only matched at the Club by centre-back Jonny Evans, while the pair are joined by just 27 others who have achieved the feat across the Premier League.

Schmeichel celebrated his 200th Premier League appearance (192 for the Foxes) in style, keeping a clean sheet as City swept Aston Villa aside in the last league fixture at King Power Stadium. That shutout was the 61st of his top flight career - an average of one in every four games.

His 10 cleansheets this season rank him amongst the best in the division - only Alisson of Liverpool and Dean Henderson of Sheffield United can boast as many shutouts in 2019/20. Schmeichel has already matched last season’s tally and eclipsed 2017/18 and 2016/17 (both eight) as well as 2014/15 (six). In fact, only in the title-winning season did he keep more cleansheets.

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Kasper Schmeichel
Kasper Schmeichel

Schmeichel's spot-kick save from Sergio Agüero's penalty was his first since 2017/18.

Now an experienced and respected figure in a young team, he has been vital in helping City become an established Premier League force that is once again looking to break into the top four. The 33-year-old’s leadership has come to the fore this season, often named as skipper in the absence of Club captain Wes Morgan.

There’s always room for improvement, however, and he has done just that, yet to make an error leading to a goal this season. It has led to City winning twice as many games as they have lost this campaign (16 to eight), conceding just 28 goals along the way. For context, that’s already more wins than last season and 20 fewer goals conceded than in the previous three seasons respectively.

His 80 saves place him ninth in the overall Premier League charts for this campaign, with 10 fewer than last season’s total after 38 games. Keeping out Sergio Agüero’s spot-kick last month was Schmeichel’s first penalty save since the 2017/18 season.

I was very lucky to inherit him but he’s a better goalkeeper than I even thought.

Brendan Rodgers

Distribution of the ball is key in the modern era and City’s No.1 also plays a vital role in starting attacks from the back. For the second season running, Schmeichel ranks in the top five for total number of passes among the Premier League’s shot-stoppers. He made 1,118 passes in 2018/19, up from 1,032 in 2017/18 and 888 in 2016/17.

A continual desire to improve his game has impressed his manager, Brendan Rodgers, who commented at the start of the season: "I was very lucky to inherit him but he’s a better goalkeeper than I even thought.”

That attitude is also reflected in Kasper’s own early season interview on LCFC TV, in which he said: “We want to be up there but we know that we can be better and there's a lot more to come.”

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