Ranieri urges Leicester’s stars to stay for one more season
Claudio Ranieri has urged his star players to stay at Leicester City for at least one more season.
Following the Foxes incredible charge to the Premier League title during the 2015-16 campaign the Italian manager is now bracing himself for big money bids for many of Europe’s top teams.
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The likes of Riyad Mahrez, N’Golo Kante and Jamie Vardy are being targeted already and Ranieri, 64, has a warning for them: be careful what you wish for.Speaking to the media about the UEFA Champions League campaign coming up next season, Ranieri was insistent that he wants his best players to remain but won’t stand in their way if they want to leave.
“I want to enjoy, but I feel it is possible maybe to keep all the players,” Ranieri said. “It is important for us, but it is important also for them because they don’t know the Champions League. If they go away, it is not good for them. It is much better if they improve another year here and then go wherever they want. But I have said so many times if one player comes to me and says, ‘Gaffer, I want to go’, then I leave him to go because it is OK.”
With the vultures already circling for Mahrez, plus reports stating that Kante has a $30 million release clause in his contract, those two seem the most likely to move on this summer. Both are about to approach their prime and may never replicated the form they showed this season. Is it time for them to cash in?
Vardy is a different case as he signed a new contract earlier this season and at 29 his value in the transfer market, despite his 24 goals this season, will not be as high as Mahrez and Kante.
It would certainly be a shame to see this Leicester team broken up over the summer but, unfortunately, it wouldn’t be a surprise.