Leicester’s chance at being crowned Premier League champions is ‘once in a lifetime’ so make it count, Claudio Ranieri tells players… and the owners even turn up in their helicopter to watch training!
- Leicester can win the Premier League title by winning at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon
- The Foxes go up against Manchester United needing only a win to be crowned champions
- Claudio Ranieri admits it is a ‘once in a lifetime’ occurrence so they need to make it count
Claudio Ranieri has admitted Leicester title chance is a once in a lifetime occurrence and challenged his players to produce a Hollywood ending.
The Leicester manager said fans have been waiting on the streets and in supermarkets to congratulate their team but insisted it will require their best away performance of the season at Old Trafford to clinch the trophy.
Leicester will win the Premier League by beating Manchester United on Sunday and Ranieri said he is relaxed because of how his team have been training this week.
Riyad Mahrez pictured during Leicester’s training session on Friday ahead of their clash at Old Trafford on Sunday
Leicester’s players are preparing for their showdown with Manchester United with the Premier League title at stake
Mahrez looks on as Jamie Vardy, who is banned for the match at Old Trafford, heads the ball during their training session
Leicester captain Wes Morgan pictured laughing during training before they go up against Manchester United
Leicester’s players and their manager, Claudio Ranieri, seemed relaxed during training on Friday ahead of their match
Leicester manager Ranieri pictured speaking during his press conference on Friday afternoon ahead of Sunday’s showdown
Ranieri was upbeat about his side’s chances on Sunday and told his players that this was a ‘once in a lifetime’ occurrence
‘Now is the real chance to win the title. Once in a lifetime,’ said Ranieri. ‘Next season, United, Chelsea, Liverpool, City, Arsenal are at the top. But we are fighting.
‘I have felt a lot of emotion. People are waiting for us on the street and the supermarket and at the training ground. They say, “Thank you for what you are doing”. I think they have to say thank you to our chairman, he is building a very good team.
‘It is not difficult to understand this. It is easy. For the first time in their lives, the people can win the league. It is unbelievable. History. And we know it.
‘I am relaxed because I watch my players. I see my players train well, enjoy, fight, run to help each other. I am a sporting man. In sport, you might not know what happens, but you can prepare everything well.
‘When you know your players are working well, the match they make the performance, but the result is not good I say, “What more can you do?” For this reason I am relaxed.
‘It is important for us to make a perfect game (at Old Trafford). The best away performance of the season, we have to do.
‘It is good we are doing something special. And of course I am very proud for everybody in Leicester, for our community. Internet, web, media, there is a good feeling about this story. But it is important to finish the story like an American movie. Always in the final it is OK. Happy ending.’
Leicester chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha pictured arriving to watch training via helicopter on Friday
Leicester owner Srivaddhanaprabha pictured with vice chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha during their training session
Robert Huth pictured during a Leicester training drill ahead of their clash against Manchester United this weekend
Leicester midfielder Andy King pictured laughing during training as the players showed no signs of the pressure getting to them
Vardy (centre) is not available for selection at Old Trafford due to his suspension following his sending off against West Ham
Leonardo Ulloa is set to stay in the starting line-up with Leicester striker Vardy banned for the trip to Manchester United
Around Leicester, residents are showing their support by turning the city blue – with schools being painted, clothes being worn and even battered sausages carrying food dye at one local chippie.
Supporters are besotted with Ranieri for his transformative impact, but he almost inadvertently insulted himself. A reporter from Fox Italy asked if he could sing his favourite saying, ‘Dilly ding, dilly dong’. But Ranieri explained: ‘No. I am dilly ding dilly dong (talks normally). I am a bell!’ After a pause and some laughter, he added: ‘Hey don’t write, “I am a bell”.’
Ranieri insisted the challenge of United would be significant, having watched them beat Everton in the FA Cup semi-final. ‘Man U started not so well because (Louis) van Gaal had to choose the right players, but now is a very, very good team,’ said Ranieri.
‘Next season it will be very hard to beat them. There are young players. I know very well (Anthony) Martial. Also (Marcus) Rashford, (Jesse) Lingard. The experienced players are very good, (Wayne) Rooney. They want to beat us, that is normal.
‘I feel it s very important to be concentrated. 100 per cent. The story of football is fantastic but you have to be focused on the match. I don’t tell my players to stay clam, I say, “Stay hungry”.’
Leicester are preparing for their biggest game of the season when they travel to Old Trafford with the Premier League title at stake
Kasper Schmeichel pictured making a save during Leicester’s training session on Friday as he prepares to face his father’s former club
Vardy laughs during training and is set to be at Old Trafford to cheer on his team-mates from the stands on Sunday
Source: Daily Mail