Premier League: Plugging holes in Fulham's leaky defence a priority, says newly appointed manager Claudio Ranieri
Claudio Ranieri’s title-winning season at Leicester was built on a solid defensive platform, and the Italian is keen to instil similar values at the London club.
Finding a way to plug Fulham’s leaky defence is the priority for the Premier League side’s new manager Claudio Ranieri after the Italian took over a team at the bottom of the standings on five points from 12 matches.
The 67-year-old replaced Slavisa Jokanovic on Wednesday after Fulham, who have conceded a Premier League-high 31 goals this season, lost patience with the Serb, with Ranieri saying the entire team needed to pull together to escape their plight.
“As an Italian manager, for us the defensive way is the best for the team,” Ranieri, a former Chelsea and Roma manager who masterminded Leicester City’s fairytale title win in 2016, said in an interview on Fulham’s website.
“It is important to have a strong vision of the defence. Not just the full backs or goalkeeper, all the team,” he added.
“For me, team spirit is important but I know there is a good group. The fighting spirit is very important... I hope our fans push us and we need their strength. We need their support always. We will never give up,” he added.
Fulham host fellow strugglers Southampton on 24 November after the Premier League resumes following the international break.
Dyche's success with Burnley, who are playing in the Premier League for a sixth consecutive season, had led to speculation of a move.
Premier League: Injured Liverpool midfielder Harvey Elliott calls Leeds defender Pascal Struijk's ban 'wrong'
Leeds said Wednesday the club have failed with their appeal against Struijk’s sending-off, which happened in the second half of Liverpool’s 3-0 win in the Premier League at Elland Road. Elliott required a lengthy period of treatment before being carried off on a stretcher, and underwent surgery on Tuesday.
Bayer Leverkusen were also winners in Group G as the Germans came from behind to beat Ferencvaros 2-1 thanks to a second-half winner from 18-year-old star Florian Wirtz.