Lineker slams Leicester board for Ranieri sacking

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Gary Lineker has hit out at Leicester City following the decision to sack Claudio Ranieri, saying that the Italian’s dismissal ‘beggared belief’.

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Ranieri miraculously won the Premier League title with the Foxes last season, but quickly saw his fortunes change on the pitch, with the holders slumping to 17th place in the table before Wednesday’s 2-1 defeat to Sevilla in the Champions League.

He was finally sacked on Thursday following reports of player unrest, and Leicester legend Lineker, who criticised the decision, admitted that he had shed a tear for the popular 65-year-old upon hearing the news.

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“It is very sad,” he told BBC Radio 4. “It is inexplicable to me. It’s inexplicable to a lot football fans who love the game.

“I suppose you can explain it in terms of a panic decision and for me a wrong decision.

“I shed a tear last night for Claudio, for football and for my club.”

Lineker, who heads the BBC’s football coverage, then slammed the Foxes’ board for what he called a “lack of gratitude”.

“It’s a sign of modern football, what happened last season was truly extraordinary,” he added on Friday. “The lack of gratitude from the owners of the club and who knows who else involved in such a decision beggars belief.

“That season will remain with us forever, it was truly special and a lot of that was down to the management.

“The same guy cannot be considered incapable of doing the job a few months later after achieving what, for me, was the biggest miracle in sport.”

Assistant manager Craig Shakespeare and first-team coach Mike Stowell will take charge for the visit of Liverpool on Monday night, with Roberto Mancini installed as the early frontrunner to take the job on a permanent basis.

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