Ranieri demands angry response from Leicester players
REUTERS - Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri wants an "angry" response from his players against Norwich City at the weekend after the leaders lost to Arsenal following a last-gasp goal in their previous Premier League outing.
City were beaten 2-1 by title rivals Arsenal at The Emirates on Feb. 14, thanks to a stoppage-time effort from England striker Danny Welbeck, and Ranieri is demanding more focus from his team when they host fourth from bottom Norwich.
"I told my players it will be a big battle on Saturday. It will be harder than against Arsenal," the Italian told a news conference on Thursday.
"I want to see my players concentrated and angry because of the way we lost in the last minute."
Ranieri said Leicester's chances of winning the top-flight title for the first time in their history could hinge on their next five fixtures.
They face West Bromwich Albion, Watford, Newcastle United and Crystal Palace after the Norwich game.
"The five matches next for us, I believe they can be key in our season," said Ranieri.
"We want to grow and stay at a high level. We have to manage the pressure and have the confidence."
Midfielder Jeffrey Schlupp could feature for the first time since Dec. 5 after recovering from a hamstring injury while new signing Daniel Amartey, who joined from Copenhagen in January, is also fit.
(Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by Tony Jimenez)