How Leicester can help explain the Trump phenemenon

The ultimate fairy tale, the Cinderella that makes all other Cinderella’s look bad. It’s what we dream of, salivating for when it might actually come true, yet dreading the consequences if it truly were to happen. Donald Trump and Leicester City couldn’t be more different, yet that dream we wish for yet dread is how they couldn’t be more similar.

It seems like a stretch. Comparing Trump to a English Premier League soccer club seems absurd. After all, not only are the two separated by a wide expanse of water known as the Atlantic, but they are also competing for two totally different prizes. Trump is the current frontrunner to win the Republican nomination for the president of the United States, arguably the toughest job in the world, and the Leicester is simply fighting to win a soccer league, albeit one of the biggest soccer leagues in the world money and popularity-wise.

So how can the two even be mentioned in the same sentence? Well it all comes back to the underdog mentality. The improbable winners that stun at every turn, and all the times you think they are out of gas, it turns out that they have multiple reserves at their disposal to keep going and keep in front. If someone told you at the start of last year Leicester would be anywhere close to the top of the Premier League, you would have laughed him off. Along those lines, if anyone had stated that Trump would be the leading candidate to become the next Republican nominee, that person would have been ridiculed. But here we are, just four months into the new year, and we have just those situations playing out. Leicester sit just two points, a single win or two draws, away from making history and becoming champions of England, and Donald Trump is just 250 delegates shy of being the Republican nominee.

What’s even more remarkable than those stats, is the support both have received during the process. Say what you will about the remarks made by Trump, but they are working. The delegate count doesn’t lie, and although he is expected to lose in the general election, that he could steal the Republican nomination from right under their collective nose is stunning in and of itself. Leicester’s rise to fan-favorites was to be expected for a Cinderella team. It’s not every year that fans are able to witness an underdog story of this sort, and they are all rallying around the team to push for the last few points they need in order to secure the championship.

Leicester’s story really shows how human psychology works and serves to provide a great analogy for explanation of the Donald Trump phenomenon. Indeed, the Foxes are the classic American stereotype of starting from the bottom “and now we here.” It unites all those against the big money clubs in soccer and serves the role of showing how sports is truly an equal playing ground.

The tale of the tape runs something like this: Leicester has spent a total of 54.4 million pounds on their roster. Their most expensive player came for about 10 million pounds. How does this stack up to other top teams? Well, Manchester City, well known for having billionaire owners hailing from the arid deserts of the United Arab Emirates, spent 54 million pounds on just one player. That’s right. Leicester’s entire roster costs the amount that City spent acquiring the services of Kevin De Bruyne from German club Wolfsburg. If that doesn’t boggle your mind then here’s another stat that will. The team’s most dangerous duo, and arguably the most dangerous duo in the world at the moment, Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, cost a combined 1,400,000 pounds. Compare that to Barcelona’s duo of Luis Suarez and Neymar, which cost well over 100 million pounds, it’s no wonder Leicester is so lovable. Everyone wants to see the common peasant farmer rise up and overthrow the king, and this is exactly what’s happening here.

So how does this relate to Trump? You might be thinking, “Trump had plenty of money, he was a celebrity already.” That’s true, he was very well-known and didn’t come out of nowhere like Leicester did. In fact, he really came out of everyone’s worst nightmare. But, it’s the flow against conventional wisdom that plays its trump card here. Trump is nothing like any politician of the past. Not only is he a celebrity, but more importantly, he is anything but politically correct. He’s willing to throw anyone under the bus in order to create a buzz, and he is willing to say anything and everything, even on national television. It’s a ridiculous method of running a campaign, and you would think this would just run his candidacy into the ground. However, the exact opposite has happened. He has gained an incredible amount of support, mostly because people are tired of convention. While it’s unlikely that Trump would make a good president, it is true that he is challenging the political system we have had in place in this country for the last few centuries. And that political system, while working on the surface, has created frustration amongst the American people. They want radical change, and Donald J. Trump is the only one able to provide them with that. To say that he’s radical isn’t an insult anymore. It’s an embrace of what we have wanted to see from politics and shows us that it’s not about trying to be as politically correct as possible, but rather about confronting the arbitrary boundaries we have set upon the governmental stage.