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Jamie Vardy is the most iconic striker in Premier League history

The only surprise was how long it took to arrive.

Just as the contest edged into its final quarter, Youri Tielemans found Jamie Vardy in the Arsenal penalty area.

What happened next was a formality.

RIP corner flag

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RIP corner flag

The Premier League’s top scorer swept home effortlessly before haring off to the corner flag to celebrate.

Euphoria. Energy. Relief. Leicester ahead.

That is Vardy’s tale, that is Vardy’s career, and he’s still writing compelling chapters at the age of 33.

While Vardy has been a constant in Leicester’s Premier League journey, this is surely the best team he’s played in.

N’Golo Kante and Riyad Mahrez aside, perhaps none of their odds-defying title winning team from 2015/16 would get in the current side.

And just as he was during that fairytale season, Vardy is the flag bearer.

This really happened

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This really happened

The Premier League has played host to some extraordinary striking talent down the years, but there’s an argument to suggest Vardy is more unique than any of them.

His story has been told and re-told a thousand times, a Hollywood film supposedly in the making.

A late bloomer who had to roll with the punches to meet the demands of the lower leagues, his journey to the top is so rare it will almost certainly never be replicated.

Wonder where these two ended up?

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Wonder where these two ended up?

There will be a ‘next Shearer’, there will be a ‘next Drogba’, but there’s unlikely to be a ‘next Vardy’ when you consider how everything has fallen into place.

Then there’s his playing style.

Raw pace. Insatiable energy levels. Sharp shooting and exhausting movement. He is a centre-back’s nightmare.

Vardy and his wrist cast go everywhere together

PA:Press Association
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Vardy and his wrist cast go everywhere together

“Jamie Vardy is always a pest; he doesn’t stop running,” Chris Smalling once told The Athletic.

“A lot of strikers will run for the good ball – strikers like Aguero who is very good, one of the best but he wouldn’t run for a ball he’s probably not going to get. Vardy would.”

He is the purest embodiment of British football and the archetypal British striker.

Rustling defenders since day dot

AFP or licensors
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Rustling defenders since day dot

Without showing any signs of age he is wary of it, channelling his energy more effectively to ensure he doesn’t waste a single calorie.

Who knows what might have been had that move to Arsenal materialised three years ago, but given their current status his decision to stay put has been vindicated.

Vardy is the poster boy for the every man and proof that anything is possible.

It’s an over used cliche, but perhaps if he was called Jameo Vardinho he would be revered even more.

Regardless of what he and Leicester achieve this season, his legacy has already been secured as the most unique goal scorer the top flight has ever witnessed.