Ranieri's Rants: Leicester (a)

Last updated : 11 January 2004 By Rich Godden
Claudio said: "We played very well - the first half was amazing, the second half was good but not like the first half. But it was important that we won and won well.

"We've paid a lot of attention to little details and everybody showed the right discipline. We need to pass and move the football and today was a good day for us.

"Joe Cole was a threat for us and also [Jesper] Gronkjaer on the right flank. We knew they would play a lot of the high balls and we knew it was important not to defend too deep.

"We showed character, skill, quality, everything. This match was important to regain our confidence."

And, after his two goal showing, Jimmy was only too happy to speak to the press! He said "We handled the pressure very well. We played good football, especially in the first half. They put us under pressure in the first 20 minutes of the second half but I think we deserved the win.

"I was up for it, everybody was up for it. We had a point to prove and everybody saw what Chelsea is about. We put a good performance in and for our confidence that's important."

Inevitably, questions were asked about his cheeky goal, and the luck of his second.... "The ball came just perfect for it [the back-heel] but you need a little bit of luck. I thought the free-kick was going in so I'm going to claim it.

"I had some chances to get a hat-trick but unfortunately it was not meant to be today."

Jimmy also revealed the importance of Mutu ending his barren run:"It's very important for us that he scored. He had a bad run but it's vital for the team that he scores and we have to build from this performance.

"We have to believe in ourselves and believe we can win every match. If we do that, we will cause problems for other teams."