Claudio Ranieri, the man who did the impossible. In his first full season with Leicester he won the Premier League, arguably the biggest achievement in Premier League history. But a few months down the line, Leicester City are fighting relegation — only one point adrift. They still haven’t managed to score a Premier League goal in 2017, and haven’t won a game in their last six, losing five and drawing one.
After his sacking the other night, all of social media exploded. The likes of Gary Lineker have called it a disgrace, and in fact most notable figures strongly disagree with the board’s decision to sack the Italian. In my eyes, I think it is the correct decision. Whatever team you are, you cannot win the league and then be one point off relegation in February the season after. I’m sure Leicester’s expectation was minimum top half of the table, so if a manager is clearly failing the expectation, surely he should get sacked? As the owners said, they’re doing this for the long term. It’s not a loyal game anymore and you can’t take the risk of not sacking the manager because of how great he did the season before.
Ranieri didn’t do himself any favours in the summer either: his transfers were poor. After Leicester City’s best player, Kante, left for Chelsea for £32m, they didn’t replace him. Steve Walsh leaving them for Everton was also a big hit for the Foxes.
There was a report where it stated senior Leicester players went to the owners and told them they were unhappy with the manager. Now whether it was right for the players to do that is another story, but when you lose the dressing room and it has to come to a point where your own players are going to the board and saying they’re not happy, something isn’t right. You can’t have players asking for Ranieri’s head and expect good results. Even in January you could see it, where Leo Ulloa said he felt ‘betrayed’ by Ranieri.
Unfortunately, real change was needed for Leicester; not scoring a goal in six games is simply not good enough for Premier League champions. I feel for Ranieri, I really do. I loved him to bits but unfortunately there was too much at stake. This is for the long term, not the short.
So where does this leave Leicester City? They’ve been linked with Mancini and Sky Sports reported that they have got in contact with him. They need a fresh face, the players need to react well to it and I’m sure they can get out of this relegation fight. I’ll be more worried for Leicester next season, when the likes of Mahrez, Schmeichel and Vardy could leave.
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