Claudio Ranieri set to take over as Watford manager

Southampton v Fulham – Premier League – St Mary’s Stadium
(Image credit: Mark Kerton)

Claudio Ranieri is expected to complete a deal to become Watford manager.

The vastly experienced Italian manager will replace Xisco Munoz at Vicarage Road, the PA news agency understands.

The 69-year-old will become Watford’s 13th permanent manager since owners the Pozzo family took control in 2012.

Ranieri steered Leicester to their incredible Premier League title

Ranieri steered Leicester to their incredible Premier League title (Nick Potts/PA)

Ranieri steered 5000/1 shots Leicester to the most improbable of all Premier League titles in 2016, in what remains the crowning glory of a lengthy managerial career.

And now the ever-popular coach is understood to be mere formalities away from confirming his first job in English football in two years.

Ranieri endured a tough spell at Fulham in 2019 in his last foray in England, winning just three of his 17 matches at Craven Cottage before being replaced by assistant Scott Parker.

But now Watford’s board believe Ranieri is the right man to kick-start the Hornets’ season after just two wins in seven matches in the new top-flight campaign.

See more

Munoz had only been in charge at Vicarage Road for 10 months, leading the club back to the Premier League, when he was unseated by Watford’s bosses on Sunday.

The Hornets have managed league wins over Aston Villa and Norwich but four losses and a draw elsewhere proved enough for the club hierarchy to make an early change.

Ranieri left Sampdoria at the end of last season and has been out of work since, but is now preparing to make his Premier League return.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1