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Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri not anxious about being sacked

Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri not anxious about being sacked

Compare that to the same stage last season: Leicester sat top, on 50 points, having earned 11 points from their previous five games.

When asked about a supposed rift between some of Leicester's players and manager Claudio Ranieri, Schmeichel added: "I'm not going to comment on any newspaper speculation".

Leicester acknowledged that "recent form needs to improve", but said Ranieri would be given the opportunity to turn things around.

The former Chelsea and Juventus boss, whose team are just one point above the drop zone after Sunday's 3-0 home defeat to Manchester United, says the public backing was more for the benefit of the media, who he described as "sharks". After that all roads point to Swansea, where Ranieri and his players desperately need to summon the spirit of last season.

The Italian coach is confident his players remain behind him less than a year after they lifted the Premier League as 5,000-1 outsiders with one of the greatest triumphs in sports history.

However Ranieri, who has also led Leicester to the UEFA Champions League round of 16, is understood to be safe in his position.

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The Foxes named a strong team that night, with nine of their regular XI from last season's title-winning team starting, and Ranieri has revealed that he'll look to implement the tested 4-4-2 formation against their Midlands rivals on Wednesday.

The much-travelled manager continues to deny suggestions of friction and issued an impassioned defence of his faltering players, while also insisting he enjoys the support of a united squad.

Ranieri admitted after that game that the "fairytale is over" for the Foxes, with fighting spirit needing to be summoned up to dig themselves out of their current hole.

With the Premier League champions now struggling for form and results, the Italian's men have subsequently found themselves dragged into a tightly-contested battle at the bottom of the table.

"I said to my players, my door is always open".

"The vote of confidence from my chairman is more for you than for me". When you don't win you lack confidence, it's normal, but fortunately these players are warriors. It's too easy to say we make mistakes and that that is bad.

"You can see from the performance on the pitch the lads are trying, and that is that".