'My dream died' - Ranieri speaks for first time after Leicester sacking

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The Italian has released a statement following his dismissal this week, less than 10 months after guiding the Foxes to the Premier League title

Claudio Ranieri has spoken for the first time since being sacked as Leicester City boss, claiming the club will forever hold a place in his heart.

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The Italian was sacked on Thursday, less than 10 months after guiding the Foxes to a historic Premier League title, with the club's board expressing their concern at the possibility of relegation from the top-flight.

Ranieri initially remained quiet on his dismissal, though released a statement on Friday evening stating that his "dream had died", and thanked those that helped him achieve the impossible last season.

“Yesterday my dream died,” the statement read. "After the euphoria of last season and being crowned Premier League Champions all I dreamt of was staying with Leicester City, the club I love, for always.

"Sadly this was not to be.

HD Claudio Ranieri Kasper Schmeichel Leicester City

"I wish to thank my wife Rosanna and all my family for their never ending support during my time at Leicester. 

"My thanks go to Paolo and Andrea who accompanied me on this wonderful journey. To Steve Kutner and Franco Granello for bringing me the opportunity to become a champion.

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"Mostly I have to thank Leicester City Football Club. The adventure was amazing and will live with me forever.

"Thank you to all the journalists and the media who came with us and enjoyed reporting on the greatest story in football.

"My heartfelt thanks to everybody at the club, all the players, the staff, everybody who was there and was part of what we achieved.

HD Claudio Ranieri Leicester City

"But mostly to the supporters. You took me into your hearts from day one and loved me. I love you too. No one can ever take away what we together have achieved, and I hope you think about it and smile every day the way I always will.

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"It was a time of wonderfulness and happiness that I will never forget. It's been a pleasure and an honour to be a Champion with all of you.