Paddy Mulligan shifts culpability from Ranieri to Leicester players

Foxes manager is under immense pressure as results fall away

Leicester, Claudio Ranieri,

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri during the Emirates FA Cup, Fifth Round match at The Den, Millwall. Picture by Jonathan Brady PA Wire/PA Images

Ex-Ireland defender Paddy Mulligan feels more spotlight needs to be put on Leicester City players amid declining fortunes and that the reigning Premier League champions should stick by manager Claudio Ranieri.

Last season's fairytale feels a long time ago as the Foxes find themselves stuck in a surprise relegation battle and were knocked out of the FA Cup by Millwall on Saturday.

Next up on Wednesday is a Champions League last 16 first leg at an impressive Sevilla side which poses a tough challenge.

But Paddy feels that Leicester should hold onto their manager.

"I think they should stick with Ranieri until the end of the season. They might be relegated but that's the chance you'll have to take," said Paddy.

"I don't think there's any point in changing a manager because I think these players are too much in the mess that they're in and they've caused it to a great degree." 

For Paddy, the results run deeper than management issues.

"It's quite obvious that there is something radically wrong at Leicester City Football Club," he said.

"Have these players who were so good last season become so bad in the space of a few months? I'm not so sure. But also I wonder do they think that they're better than what they actually are and was last year just a complete one-off for them and they played to the very, very best of their ability and they cannot replicate that this season."

Paddy pointed out that the centre backs are struggling badly in comparison to last season's resilience and also picked out a moment from last Sunday's defeat to Swansea when Marc Albrighton let Martin Olsson drift past him.

"Is that the manager's fault that Albrighton let Olsson go? I don't think so. But I do think that they're very, very flawed at this moment in time and perhaps Ranieri needs to have a better look at what options are available to him," he said.

"I know he changed the team around completely last Saturday. He may have been better off playing the players who played last season and got them into this mess."

As for the Sevilla tie, Paddy is not holding out much hope for Leicester given the talent and form that Sevilla have shown this season. 

"You couldn't fancy them against Sevilla. Sevilla are a top class team," he said. 

You can listen to the full chat below: