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Dream Leicester start thrills Ranieri

SoccerNews in English Premier League 8 Aug 2015

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Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri hailed his side’s teamwork and attacking qualities following Saturday’s 4-2 opening-day victory over Sunderland.

Former Chelsea boss Ranieri made his Premier League return at the King Power Stadium and saw Leicester put Sunderland to the sword with a clinical first-half display.

Jamie Vardy and a Riyad Mahrez brace put Leicester 3-0 up, with Marc Albrighton’s second-half goal sandwiched between consolation strikes from Jermain Defoe and Steven Fletcher.

Ranieri, whose predecessor Nigel Pearson guided Leicester to safety with an impressive run of late-season form last term, told reporters: “It was important to start well.

“I asked my players: ‘Hey you finished last season very well, I want to see you restart at the same level.’

“The performance was very, very good. The first half was outstanding, the second half was normal – we went down a little but that’s okay.

“We made mistakes but when you win you are more confident and I can say you make this mistake and show to them and they are more receptive.

“Today we played like a team, that’s what I want because when you play like a team, there are one or two not 100 per cent, but the team support the others.

“Riyad made something good but because the others supported him or supported Shinji [Okazaki] or Albrighton or Vardy – everybody worked so hard.”

Ranieri also revealed defender Ritchie De Laet’s second-half withdrawal was down to cramp rather than injury.

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