Ranieri to leave Cagliari and retire from club management

Claudio Ranieri is applauded by the Cagliari fans
Claudio Ranieri masterminded one of the greatest stories in Premier League history when Leicester won the title in 2015-16 [Getty Images]

Claudio Ranieri has announced that he will retire from club management having helped Cagliari avoid relegation from Serie A.

The 72-year-old has taken charge of 18 club sides and had a brief stint as Greece boss in a managerial career that spans almost four decades back to 1986.

He is most famous for leading Leicester City to the Premier League title in 2015-16, when the club were rated as 5,000-1 underdogs at the start of the campaign.

Cagliari had already secured their Serie A status going into Ranieri's last match in the dugout, a 3-2 home defeat by Fiorentina on Thursday.

Speaking before the game, he told Sky Sport Italia: "I have finished my career as a club coach."

The Italian added that he could take an international job if it appealed to him.

Ranieri was emotional in his final Cagliari game as fans chanted his name before kick-off and gave him a standing ovation, while a banner displayed the message 'Eternal gratitude to a great man'.

This season he has cemented his status as a great at the club, who were playing in Italy's third tier when Ranieri arrived for his first spell in 1988.

Having inherited a side fighting relegation, he helped the club to consecutive promotions and then top-flight safety before heading to Fiorentina and then the likes of Atletico Madrid, Chelsea, Juventus, Inter Milan and Monaco.

On his return in January 2023 Cagliari were 12th in Serie B but went on to secure promotion via the play-offs - coming from two goals down to beat Parma in the semi-final and winning the final against Bari with a stoppage-time goal in the second leg.

Ranieri has also managed Roma and Valencia twice and in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, the Spanish club wrote: “One of the most beloved coaches in the history of Valencia CF is retiring. Claudio Ranieri, we wish you the very best. Thank you for everything."

Another of his former clubs, Napoli, also commented on social media, saying: “Thank you for everything, Ranieri. A true professional and a man of such noble values.”