I should rest more players: Ranieri

LONDON • Claudio Ranieri has promised to rethink the way he juggles the demands of competing in the Premier League and Champions League, after Leicester City were held to a 0-0 draw by Southampton on Sunday.

The Foxes have been unable to reproduce the relentless work rate that carried them to their fairytale title triumph last season, and lie 10 points behind leaders Manchester City following the stalemate at the King Power Stadium.

Leicester had been perky enough during their midweek Champions League 1-0 win over Porto, but were much less vibrant against Southampton, who dominated for long periods and should have won.

Ranieri has time to work on a solution during the international break this week and he conceded it might be wise to rest more players following European matches after making only one change against the Saints at the end of a frantic period of seven matches in 22 days.

"I recognise they played better than us and deserved to win," Ranieri said.

"For us it is okay, one point and a clean sheet.

"Now I have to think about when we play every three days. Maybe it was much better to give some rest to some players. I changed just one player. It is not enough."

The Italian will face an immediate test of his rotation plan when Leicester return to action after the international break.

They have a busy week featuring a trip to Chelsea, a European clash with Copenhagen and a game at home with Crystal Palace.

He also needs to work on his tactics as opponents are growing wise to Leicester's counter-attacking style.

"The other teams are very worried with our counter-attack and try to stop us every time. We have to find the solution," Ranieri admitted.

After a slow start under new French coach Claude Puel, Southampton are now unbeaten in their last six matches in all competitions, with an impressive six clean sheets during that run.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 04, 2016, with the headline 'I should rest more players: Ranieri'. Print Edition | Subscribe