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Andy King hoping Leicester will be celebrating in Copenhagen again

Published 01/11/2016

Andy King made his debut for Leicester in 2007 after coming through the youth system
Andy King made his debut for Leicester in 2007 after coming through the youth system

Leicester midfielder Andy King is hoping the Foxes can become real heroes in Copenhagen on Wednesday after last year's fancy dress party in the Danish capital.

The squad headed to Copenhagen for their Christmas do last December, with King, Danny Drinkwater, Matty James and Ben Hamer dressing up as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Shinji Okazaki was Bananaman while Jamie Vardy was the White Power Ranger and Robert Huth Batman.

Claudio Ranieri's side face FC Copenhagen on Wednesday knowing victory would seal qualification for the last 16 of the Champions League.

The Foxes are making their debut among the European elite and, with the side top of Group G and five points clear with nine points, King wants to be celebrating in Copenhagen again.

"We had a great weekend. That sort of sums up the team spirit we've got in the camp," said the Wales international, who reached the Euro 2016 semi-finals with his country in the summer.

"We all came away for the Christmas party, we had had a great time and saw bits of the city. But we're here for work now and hopefully we can go home as happy as we did last time.

"At that point we weren't looking that far ahead. We were top at Christmas and the aim was 40 points and we were nearly there. We're 10 months down the line and a lot has gone on but it's the same desire is in the dressing room.

"We know there's still three massive games to go. We want to get across the line. It's the first time in this competition for us so it would be massive to qualify. We know how hard it's going to be but we've been enjoying it.

"Once you get a little taste of success people want more and the players are no different. We have really enjoyed the last 12 months but we want that to continue - we don't want to rest on our laurels."

King is the club's longest-serving current player, having made 342 appearances for the club, winning League One, the Championship and the Premier League. E ight years ago on Tuesday he played in the Foxes' 2-1 win over Bristol Rovers in League One.

He said: "It's been brilliant. As a club we have managed to take massive steps, getting back to where we feel we belong in the Premier League. Now it's a dream come true for the club and the players in the Champions League.

"For myself I'm just trying to keep improving by working with brilliant players and coaching staff and hopefully that can continue."

Ranieri has remained relaxed ahead of the trip to Denmark and spent Monday night serving sweets to trick-or-treaters at his home in Leicester.

He said: "I put a big bag of chocolates at the door. People came. Unbelievable. I came to the door, went back to my living room to watch the television and 'ring!' and I go back. Then I put the chair very close to the door. It was good."

But, however cool, Ranieri has warned his side - who have a 100 per cent record in Europe this season and are yet to concede a goal - they cannot take qualification for granted at Parken on Wednesday.

He said: "I understand everybody wants to win but for us it's important to have everything in our hands. We can write a new chapter of the Leicester story but maybe it's not (on Wednesday). It's important to concentrate because Copenhagen are well organised. I respect them a lot.

"We are very close to achieving something special."

Islam Slimani missed Saturday's 1-1 draw at Tottenham with a groin injury and will not be risked while Ahmed Musa is expected to be fit despite taking a knock scoring the Foxes' second-half equaliser.

Nampalys Mendy remains out with an ankle injury which has kept the midfielder sidelined since August.

Ranieri added: "Slimani is not ready. I don't want to risk him. The physio told me, 'He is okay but be careful'. Why use a player for one match and lose him for one month?"

Press Association

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