Claudio Ranieri to take 96-year-old mother to lunch in Italy instead of watching Tottenham versus Chelsea
Claudio Ranieri admits he will be the last person to know if Leicester are crowned champions on Monday because he will be returning from lunch with his 96-year-old mother in Italy.
The Foxes boss was due to travel to his homeland on Sunday evening, with his return flight at exactly the same time as Tottenham’s trip to Chelsea.
Leicester could not take their first chance to clinch the Premier League title, drawing 1-1 with Manchester United at Old Trafford, but they will be crowned champions if Spurs fail to win at Stamford Bridge.
Ranieri said: “Tomorrow night I am on a flight. Now I go back to Italy and I come back at the same time of the match. I will be the last man to know the result.
“I want to meet my mother. She is 96 years old and I’d like to go to have lunch with her.”
Leicester fans travelled to Old Trafford in their thousands in hope and expectation, and the atmosphere reflected the magnitude of the occasion.
Wes Morgan’s header cancelled out Anthony Martial’s early goal, opening up the possibility of Leicester winning the title before their next match at home to Everton.
Ranieri insisted he would be delighted if Monday’s result pushed them over the line, saying: “I want to win, it is not important when, believe me.”
The Italian admitted his side were blown away to start with but praised their response in the absence of suspended top scorer Jamie Vardy.
Ranieri said: “I am so happy because we drew against a fantastic Manchester United. They play so well. At the beginning it was amazing.
“We suffer a lot because they press so high. Without Vardy it was difficult for us to stretch the defensive line.
“But I am very pleased with our composure, performance. After the goal we keep calm and we score a goal. After that we got a lot of confidence and we played better.
“After that it was another match. They can score, we can score. At the end it is a draw. I am very happy.”
Ranieri will continue to keep his players’ feet on the ground as Leicester prepares for a party the city could never have envisaged.
“I know in the city there are fireworks, all the city is blue, but we must continue to concentrate without listening to those fireworks,” said Ranieri. “We have to stay on the pitch and think there will be another tough match.”