English Premiership

Ranieri hails Vardy, still fears relegation

2015-11-29 12:08
claudio ranieri
Claudio Ranieri © Reuters Images

Leicester - Claudio Ranieri led the tributes to Premier League record-breaking forward Jamie Vardy but the Leicester manager is still only interested in ensuring his team remains clear of relegation.

The popular Italian has presided over an astonishing start to the campaign for his unfashionable club and Vardy's goal brought a well-earned 1-1 draw with Manchester United, a result that keeps both clubs in contention at the top of a table currently being led by Manchester City.

It was the 11th straight game in which Vardy has scored -- a new Premier League best -- and the first time a player has achieved that mark in the top division since Blackpool's Stan Mortensen 65 years ago.

A small ceremony, involving a signed souvenir shirt, took place in the home dressing room at the King Power Stadium after the game.

"I signed his shirt because my signature is very important," joked Ranieri.

"I wrote 'Great achievement, great record, 11 games in a row' and the date. Then I made everybody sign the shirt.

"Somebody sooner or later will break the record but I hope Jamie keeps on scoring and keeps the record for a long time. We're very, very proud about this record because everybody, all his team mates, helped him achieve it.

"I said two things to my players in the meeting before. One, win the match, second help Jamie achieve the record. We drew the match and I'm pleased because the performance was good and I'm very, very happy with the record. Fantastic. A great achievement."

Victory would have lifted Leicester back to the top of the table, the position in which they found themselves last weekend, although Ranieri insisted his only current target involves the opposite end of the division and reaching the 40-point mark that usually guarantees survival.

"We don't think about it," he said when asked about their aims at the top.

"Now I'm thinking 11 (points) to go. For us, it's important, 11 to go. For our honour, it's important; for our project, it's very important. When I see 40 points then we can take another step, little by little."

Vardy seemed to take such a high-profile occasion in his stride.

"It was just like any other game. The record was the last thing on my mind," he said.

"I just wanted to put in a good performance and get three points.

"If I'd thought about the record too much it would have affected my performance and I didn't want that. It would have been letting my team down. We win as a team -- and today we drew as one.

"When I got back into the dressing-room, the reaction from the lads was brilliant. They gave me a round of applause. The manager came in and said a few words and he's left a shirt that he's signed.

"I don't know what they'll have written on it by the time I go back in. If it's not suitable, I'll leave it in the wardrobe. But if not then of course, I'll get it framed."

NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
Saturday, 20 January 2018
Brighton & Hove Albion v Chelsea, The American Express Community Stadium 14:30
Stoke City v Huddersfield Town, Bet365 Stadium 17:00
Arsenal v Crystal Palace, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Everton v West Bromwich Albion, Goodison Park 17:00
Leicester City v Watford, King Power Stadium 17:00
West Ham United v AFC Bournemouth, London Stadium 17:00
Burnley v Manchester United, Turf Moor 17:00
Manchester City v Newcastle United, Etihad Stadium 19:30
Sunday, 21 January 2018
Southampton v Tottenham Hotspur, St. Mary's Stadium 18:00
Monday, 22 January 2018
Swansea City v Liverpool, Liberty Stadium 22:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2017/18 season?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Featured

The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.