‘I want lunch with my mum so may miss ti­tle vic­tory’

The Daily Telegraph - Total Football - - BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE - By Ja­son Burt

Lunch with his 96-year-old mother Re­nata will take prece­dence for Clau­dio Ranieri over watch­ing Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur’s match away to his for­mer club Chelsea to­day.

The Le­ices­ter City man­ager re­vealed that he would be fly­ing back from Rome dur­ing the game at Stam­ford Bridge.

“I go back to Italy and I come back at the same time of the match,” he said af­ter Le­ices­ter’s draw away to Manch­ester United and with Spurs hav­ing to win to keep the ti­tle race alive.

“I will be the last man to know the re­sult. I want to see my mother, she’s 96 years old, and I would like to have lunch with her.” The lunch is a long-stand­ing ar­range­ment.

Ranieri said it was “not im­por­tant when” Le­ices­ter won the ti­tle when asked whether he would pre­fer it to be sealed af­ter next Satur­day’s home game against Ever­ton.

“I put it in my mind that Tot­ten­ham will win all three matches,” he said be­fore ac­knowl­edg­ing that Chelsea would be mo­ti­vated to beat Spurs, as their play­ers have al­ready de­clared. “I was Chelsea man­ager and for us when I was at Chelsea the true derby was against Tot­ten­ham,” Ranieri said.

He added that it was “psy­cho­log­i­cally” a sig­nif­i­cant re­sult for his team not to lose away to United and in­sisted that they would re­main calm. “I wasn’t wor­ried be­cause we have very good heart and I knew we would re­act,” Ranieri added. “I am so happy be­cause we drew against a fan­tas­tic Manch­ester United. At the be­gin­ning it was amaz­ing. We suf­fer a lot be­cause they press so high. With­out [Jamie] Vardy it was dif­fi­cult for us to stretch the de­fen­sive line. Af­ter the goal we keep calm and we score a goal. Af­ter that we got a lot of con­fi­dence and we played bet­ter.”

He said he did not know whether his play­ers would watch the Spurs match. “All the city [Le­ices­ter] is blue but we have to stay con­cen­trated with­out think­ing of fire­works,” the Ital­ian said.

Fam­ily man: Clau­dio Ranieri is fly­ing to Italy for a lunch date with his mother

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