Where are they now: The Leicester side that faced Atletico in 1997

Almost every time Leicester qualify for Europe, Atletico has eventually stood in the way

BY Raf Diallo 14:38 Tuesday 11 April 2017, 14:38 11 Apr 2017

Leicester City captain Steve Walsh (left) leads out his team. Michael Steele/EMPICS Sport

In the space of 60 years, Leicester City are only on their fourth foray into Europe.

This current Champions League campaign has already been their strongest by a country mile as last season's unexpected Premier League champions reach the quarter finals.

Atletico Madrid stand in the way of further historic progression and despite Leicester's infrequent appearances in Europe, fate has often conspired to pit the Spanish club with the Foxes.

Back in 1961-62, Leicester played in Europe for the first time as they entered the European Cup Winners Cup and it was Atletico who eliminated them in the first round over two legs.

Then 36 years later, current Ireland manager Martin O'Neill guided Leicester back into Europe again for the second time but yet again they were drawn against Atletico in the first round of the UEFA Cup and came out the wrong side of a 4-1 aggregate loss in September 1997.

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Twenty years on, it's the turn of Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez and co to go third time lucky against Atletico.

But who were the members of the team that lost to Atletico in 1997-98 and what have they been up to in recent times? Wednesday's match is an away tie for Leicester so let's look at the corresponding fixture and starting lineup from September 16th 1997 when goals from ex-Middlesbrough cult hero Juninho and former Italy striker Christian Vieri gave the home side a 2-1 win.

Kasey Keller

Emerged among a talented generation of US goalkeepers including Brad Friedel. Part of four USA World Cup squads, oddly enough with the exception of 1994 on home soil, Keller would later go on to spent four years at Tottenham between 2001 and 2005.

These days, he is associated with MLS side Seattle Sounders where he finished his playing career and serves as a broadcast analyst for the franchise, having also done some punditry for ESPN. 

Pontus Kamark

The former Sweden international full back retired all the way back in 2002 and is now a pundit on Viasat in his homeland.

Steve Walsh

The former defender captained the side against Atletico and made well over 350 appearances for the Foxes from 1986 to 2000. He and ex-Foxes team-mate Muzzy Izzet run the Advanced Football Development Academy in the local area.

Spencer Prior

A man with a multitude of clubs including Norwich City, Manchester City and Derby County, the 45 year old spent a couple of years at Leicester which coincided with the club's UEFA Cup appearance.

Having ended his playing career in Australia, he began his coaching progression there and has since moved on to become the manager of the Thailand women's national team

Matt Elliott 

The former defender signed for Leicester on a club record fee in the summer of 1997 and would remain at the club all the way until 2005.

He retains strong ties with Leicester. After getting involved in coaching, he has become a football analyst for BBC Radio Leicester.

Leicester City's Ian Marshall (third left) fires in the first goal. Matthew Ashton/EMPICS Sport

Steve Guppy

The ex-winger's association with Martin O'Neill has taken him from being signed by the then Leicester manager in 1997 to now working for him as part of his Ireland backroom coaching team. He had also coached under O'Neill at Sunderland.

In 2016, he told Newstalk that he was tasked with checking out whether Leicester striker Jamie Vardy had any Irish connections.

Neil Lennon

The former Northern Ireland and Celtic midfielder has since gone into management. As Celtic manager he won two Scottish league titles and also guided them to a Champions League group stage match win over Barcelona.

After a difficult period in charge of Bolton Wanderers, he is now manager of Hibernian and recently clashed on the sideline with Morton counterpart Jim Duffy. 

Muzzy Izzet

Born and raised in London but a Turkish international who went on to go to Euro 2000 and the 2002 World Cup, the former midfielder released his autobiography in 2015 and co-runs an academy with Steve Walsh.

Garry Parker

The former midfielder was at Leicester from 1995 to 2001 where he finished his career and these days, he is assistant coach to ex-Foxes team-mate Neil Lennon at Hibs.

Ian Marshall

At Leicester from 1996 to 2000, he retired at Blackpool two years later. He went on to become involved in academy coaching in Canada but now become director of the IMFootball academy. 

Emile Heskey

A butt of many an unfair joke regarding his scoring record, one can't laugh at his overall record however as he had the strongest career of any of the other members of this 11.

He went on to prove a good and unselfish foil at Liverpool, particularly up front with Michael Owen and would repeat that for England where he would score in the famous 5-1 win over Germany in 2001 and at the 2002 World Cup. 

The Leicester hometown lad started his career at the club and would remain until 2000, scoring just shy of 50 goals in all competitions.

He retired at Bolton last season.


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