Football: Rich clubs will rule Premier League for 20 years, says coach of new champs Ranieri

Claudio Ranieri arrives for the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Leicester City at Old Trafford.
Claudio Ranieri arrives for the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Leicester City at Old Trafford. PHOTO: AFP

LONDON (REUTERS) - Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri believes England's rich clubs will dominate the Premier League for the next two decades despite his team's unlikely run to their first top-flight title.

"Big money makes big teams and usually big teams win. Now we can say only 99 per cent of the time," the 64-year-old Italian was quoted as saying by the BBC. "Next season will be the same and for the next 10 or 20 years, it will be the same," he added after his 5,000-1 outsiders clinched the trophy on Monday.

He noted surprise winners emerge once every 20 years, with Nottingham Forest in 1978, after promotion the previous season, and Blackburn Rovers in 1995, three years after going up.

"How many years after Nottingham Forest and Blackburn have another team won?" said Ranieri. "The richest, or the team who can pick up the best players to make a team, will win."

Leicester's squad cost less than £60 million (S$118 million), although their billionaire Thai owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha said two years ago he was ready to spend £180 million to claim a top-five finish within three years.

But former Chelsea manager Ranieri said he would not pay big transfer fees despite the extra demands facing Leicester, who will play in their first Champions League campaign next term.

"We don't need superstars, we need our players," he said. "I want to improve the squad without big stars but the right players."