Jamie Vardy is starting his 10th season as a Leicester City player but insists he still feels as fresh as ever and is up for the battle of keeping his place against two young guns.
The club’s number nine is set to start at Wembley this afternoon as City bid to win the Community Shield against Manchester City.
The last time they played in this fixture, Vardy got City’s goal, rounding David De Gea in a 2-1 loss to Manchester United.
Back then, there was no doubt over his starting spot in the side. Now, he comes into a season having not finished as top scorer for the first time in six years, Kelechi Iheanacho taking that title, and following the arrival of a £23m hitman in Patson Daka.Will Leicester City Sign A Replacement For Wesley Fofana
Two open-play goals in 27 appearances since Christmas has prompted suggestions it’s the start of the end for 34-year-old Vardy, but he has said he is thriving amid renewed competition.
Asked how old he feels, Vardy told ITV: “24. It’s all about looking after yourself, making sure I can be as fit and as in as good shape as possible. I’m waking up still feeling like that, and long may that continue.
“(The competition) is great. If you look at last season there was a lot of relying on myself and Kels, so you want that extra person and that extra competition, because it makes you thrive, especially when you’re on the training field.
“You want to better each other, which brings out the best in yourself. Working hard and learning off each other in how we all play, that can only benefit the club.”
Vardy also begins this season as a Premier League winner, an FA Cup winner, and a Golden Boot winner.
What else is there for him to set his sights on?
“There’s still a lot more that we want to achieve as a club,” he said. “It’s all about progression. Over the past few seasons we’ve done that.
“I know we missed out on the Champions League again last season but we picked up the FA Cup and if we had been told that at the start of the season we’d have snatched your hands off.
“Now it’s about setting new targets and seeing if we can improve even more.”