Claudio Ranieri believes Leicester City were punished for a nervous first-half display in their 1-0 defeat to Liverpool.
Jurgen Klopp’s side dominated the opening hour at Anfield and took the lead through Christian Benteke’s goal midway through the second half.
Leicester pushed hard for a late equaliser, but were unable to force Simon Mignolet into many meaningful saves as they failed to score in a Premier League game for the first time this season.
“We started to play too late,” Ranieri said afterwards. “Liverpool pushed from the beginning and for this reason they deserved to win.
“They showed a very good character and we tried to do our best but maybe in the first half we were too nervous to play our football.
“The second half was much better, but it is okay. We created two or three chances but not clear ones. They scored a good goal.”
Ranieri surprisingly withdrew Jamie Vardy, the Premier League’s top scorer, shortly after Benteke’s goal, but the former Chelsea boss explained the striker had been feeling unwell prior to the game.
“Jamie Vardy played with a fever and I had to change him and Riyad Mahrez was very tired,” Ranieri added, before confirming the England international will face a fitness test ahead of the meeting with Manchester City on Tuesday.