Claudio Ranieri expected to retire after leaving Cagliari

Claudio Ranieri is expected to retire from football after stepping down from his role as Cagliari head coach.

Ranieri, 72, who led Leicester to their stunning Premier League title success in 2016, has been reported to have retired by several media outlets, but has not yet made an official announcement.

He guided Cagliari to Serie A safety this season after winning promotion with them in the 2022-23 campaign and the Sardinia club paid a lengthy tribute to their popular out-going manager on their official website.

Cagliari said: “Mister Ranieri bids farewell to Cagliari: In his two spells with the club, he always managed to lead the team to achieve their original objective.

“Already the mastermind behind two successive promotions in the past (from Serie C to Serie A) and survival in the top flight, in the last year-and-a-half, he has put together yet another masterpiece.”

The club added: “These are tears of joy and gratitude for the man who was able to write some of the most beautiful scripts in Cagliari’s history. What he did will remain indelible in the hearts of every fan.

“Cagliari is and always will be your home. Forever grateful, Mister.”

Ranieri guided Cagliari to back-to-back promotions, reaching Serie A in 1990 during his first spell as the club’s head coach.

The former Roma defender’s managerial career began at Vigor Lamezia in 1986 and he has had stints in charge of  Napoli, Fiorentina, Valencia (twice), Atletico Madrid, Parma, Juventus, Roma (twice), Inter Milan and the Greece national team.

He has managed English clubs Leicester, Fulham and Watford, plus French club Nantes, and was central to one of sport’s biggest upsets when leading the Foxes to English top-flight success.