Claudio Ranieri’s first stint as a manager was with a relatively small team, Campania Puteolana, in Pozzuli, Italy. In 1988, he switched to Cagliari and made a name for himself. The team was successful in many seasons and won the Coppa Italia Series C in 1989. Ranieri was credited with the team’s success.
In 1991, he moved to manage Napoli, a club he had limited success with. In his second year as its manager, he was fired by the club’s owner after the team was eliminated early from the UEFA Cup.
In 1993, he joined Fiorentina and took charge of the team. Despite initial hurdles, the team won the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italiana in 1996. He also introduced players such as Rui Costa and Franceso Baiano to the country. However, the team’s second season was less successful.
He moved to Spain in 1997 to take control of Valencia and was the coach there until 1999. He became popular and helped the team win the UEFA Intertoto Cup (1998) and the Copa del Rey (1999). He was credited for bringing back energy and grit into the team, and left his position there as a popular man.
In 1999, he signed a contract with Atletico Madrid as the manager. However, the team struggled and barely managed to make a name for themselves. Before he could be sacked, Ranieri thought it wise to resign and move on.
He joined as the head coach for Chelsea in September 2000. Barring initial language barrier, Ranieri’s hard work was appreciated by many. He continued sprucing up and rebuilding the squad. He signed several new names, but the performance of the team was still below average.
In his third season with Chelsea, he was constantly criticized for his ways and was nicknamed ‘Tinkerman’. However, the team’s journey in the season was successful and they qualified for the Champions League. Ranieri’s resilient spirit was finally appreciated by the media and fans.
In 2003, after changes in the upper management of Chelsea, Ranieri’s position became unsteady and he poured his heart and soul in signing new players, including Damien Duff, Joe Cole, Wayne Bridge, etc. The gamble worked, and the team stood second in the Premier League.
Under Ranieri, Chelsea made many records and broke some as well. Despite a massively successful show, he was asked to leave in 2004 and was replaced by Jose Mourinho.
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Many big names and key players who play for Chelsea today were spotted and mentored by Ranieri, and he left the club a successful man. He published ‘Proud Man Walking’, a memoir describing his last year with Chelsea, in 2004.
In 2004, he signed a 3-year contract with Valencia as its coach. He signed many new players and got a great start in the season. However, the team’s later slump and a few erratic decisions by Ranieri cost him his job, and he was sacked in 2005 after receiving a severance of £3 million.
In 2007, he was revealed as the new manager of Parma. Under him, Parma started off impressively and avoided elimination. However, the club did not renew his contract for the next season, and Ranieri moved to Juventus with a 3-year contract.
At Juventus, Ranieri continued bringing in new talent and led the team to a third spot in the first season. Ranieri’s choices on the field continued to be questioned, and he was sacked from the team in May 2009.
Ranieri moved back home in 2009 to his original club Roma as its manager. He became the head coach, and the team’s performance was strikingly different under him. They won more games and set a record of 23 unbeaten matches. The media appreciated Ranieri’s encouragement of local talent.
Despite early successes, Roma couldn’t convert their wins into trophies and often lost in the finals. Ranieri resigned in February 2011 after many failed matches. He moved on to Inter in September 2011 and signed a 2-year contract with them.
With Inter, Ranieri’s early matches were dotted with wins and later often resulted in slumps. After a series of defeats, he was asked to leave. When he joined Monaco, the same unsuccessful fate followed Ranieri and his contract with Monaco ended in 2014 unrenewed.
In 2014, he became the manager of the Greece National team, but local barriers and geographical boundaries made his tenure in Greece troublesome, and he was sacked in November 2014.
In July 2015, he was announced as the manager of Leicester City. His first season with them was a roaring success, and the club stood first in the Premier League. It was the first title victory for the team. The triumph was credited to Ranieri’s tactics and inspirational leadership. He is said to have brought new energy to the team ensuring its worldwide recognition. He was dubbed ‘King Claudio’ after the win.
The second season for Leicester City wasn’t as successful, and they lost many matches. Following the losses, Ranieri was sacked in February 2017 amidst contradictory opinions. However, the players blamed themselves and bid adieu to the coach with cheer.
After leaving Leicester City, Ranieri managed several teams. He was the manager of Rest of the World team at Soccer Aid in April 2016, and then became Nantes’s manager in 2017. In November 2018, he became the manager of Fulham and continues to hold that position.