Culture shock

Ex-Leicester star Dragovic says drinking culture is a ‘culture shock’ and training was ‘like the first day after the holidays’

FORMER Leicester ace Aleksandar Dragovic has expressed his amazement at the drinking culture at the King Power Stadium.

And the 96-cap Austria international has revealed how Jamie Vardy terrorized a disguised capital – comparing the ex-England star to the Duracell Bunny.


Austrian international Dragovic spent a season on loan at LeicesterCredit: Rex Features

Dragovic, 30, born in Serbia, spent the 2017-18 season on loan at the Foxes from Bayer Leverkusen.

He made 16 appearances to help Claude Puel’s side finish ninth in the Premier League.

The centre-back ended a five-year spell with German giants Bayer to join Red Star Belgrade this summer.

Dragovic told German website “Everything in English football is much more relaxed than in Germany. There is a huge difference.

“German players are treated like soldiers, and you can’t even smile in training.

“But at Leicester, training was always like the first day back from vacation.

“We were laughing and joking. It was pure fun, but from the start of the game we were 100% focused.

“Jamie Vardy was the biggest prankster. The guy was like the Duracell Bunny, always full.

“He can’t sit still or be quiet, and it was a pleasure spending a year with him.”

Dragovic recalled a trip to Sweden for a three-day party, when the stars stepped out in costume.

He said: “Before our cup game against Chelsea, the players flew to Stockholm for three days, without the coach.

Leicester's Aleksandar Dragovic tackles Man City star Phil Foden in 2017


Leicester’s Aleksandar Dragovic tackles Man City star Phil Foden in 2017Credit: Getty – Contributor

“Everything was arranged with the club, and they even sent some security guards with us.

“Then we partied for three days. Once we ransacked the town in disguises.

“Jamie kept storming into stores wearing his costume and scaring the locals.

“We played against Chelsea just a day and a half after we returned, and we only lost after extra time. Something like that would be unthinkable in Germany.

“People from Leicester would even tell us to go out for a drink together. The players were often in the pub.

“Of course, we weren’t drinking so much that we couldn’t walk – but it was no problem for us to have a few beers.

“It was a culture shock for me after my time in Germany. I wondered if it was something unique to Leicester or common throughout England.


“I then asked my national team-mates Sebastian Prodl and Marko Arnautovic what life was like at Watford and West Ham, and they told me similar stories.

“When we met fans at the pub, some wanted to talk to us or even buy us tours. It was never stressful.

“With this freedom, I felt better in England than in Germany. I think every player should be allowed to decide what he needs.

“If someone wants a beer or a pizza, they should have them.

“As long as they don’t affect his performance, I don’t see any problem.”