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  1. ITV Report

Craig Shakespeare: Leicester City has utmost respect for Claudio Ranieri

Leicester City interim manager Craig Shakespeare has said the club will have "utmost respect" for former manager Claudio Ranieri, but insists their focus is to make sure they get back to winning ways.

Speaking to the media for the first time since Ranieri was sacked, Shakespeare said it was "irrelevant" what he thought about the dismissal but admits results "haven't been good enough".

He told a packed press conference: "We all know in football these things can happen.

"We will make sure we remember him. He'll get the utmost respect from everybody associated with the football club and what he's achieved.

"Whether I think it is the right decision is irrelevant. The owners have made that decision and we have to respect that.

Claudio Ranieri was the most successful manager in the club's history. Credit: AP

"We all know results haven't been good enough this season. In the circumstances, I can understand [him losing his job]."

Shakespeare and first-team coach Mike Stowell will manage the team against Liverpool on Monday evening, and in a rallying cry, said: "We start now".

"We need to make sure we get back to winning ways. Our focus has to be getting three points on Monday night.

"We have 13 games left now and we start on Monday. We need to get behind the team, we need to get behind the players and all pull together.

"My aim is to restore confidence quickly. Players experience lots of lows and highs and we have to make sure they're ready for Monday's game.

Leicester City sacked manager Claudio Ranieri after their Champions League defeat at Seville. Credit: AP

"There is enough talent in that dressing room for us to go on a winning run", he added.

The Foxes are currently 17th in the table and hover just a point above the relegation zone.

Claudio Ranieri was described by the club as "the most successful Leicester City manager of all-time" after his dismissal.

He defied the bookmakers to win the Premier League last season, and was sacked despite leading the team to the Last-16 of the Champions League.

But despite being sacked he remained in high spirits on Friday - happily posing for a photo with two young Leicester fans who delivered him a card at his home.

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