The forgotten story of … Leicester City winning the 1971 Charity Shield

They won neither the league nor the FA Cup but Leicester took on Liverpool in the 1971 curtain-raiser after Arsenal pulled out, and went on to beat their more fancied opponents 1-0 at Filbert Street thanks to an unlikely source

Three months on the concept of Leicester City being the defending Premier League champions still does not seem real. There will be reminders of it in the coming weeks, starting with the Community Shield against Manchester United on Sunday. But despite this being Leicester’s first top-flight title win and having never won the FA Cup, this will not be their first appearance in the season curtain-raiser.

In 1971 Arsenal won the Double, the second club in the 20th century to do so, but whereas that would usually confirm their place in the Charity Shield, they had other plans for early August. Rather than take part in what is the traditional season opener, Arsenal played a series of friendlies: two against Benfica (home and away), and on the day faced Feyenoord in Rotterdam.

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