Welcome to Inter’s new coach Claudio Ranieri

Everyone knew after the Novara game that Gian Piero Gasperini wasn’t going to see the end of the next day as the Inter head coach but I can’t imagine that anyone thought that Massimo Moratti and Marco Branca would instate his replacement so quickly. This says to me of course that this has been in the pipeline for a little while and regardless of what has been said in previous weeks Gasperini was rapidly running out of time.

A few months ago when we were originally looking for Leonardo’s replacement Ranieri was amongst the list of candidates so it’s no real surprise that he was chosen. One crucial factor in his appointment is the fact he has been the coach of several top-level clubs and ‘The Tinkerman’ is known to have a talent for steadying a ship, which will be vital after Inter’s disastrous last couple of months. The downside of his appointment is that he is widely considered as ‘the best loser’ as he has a habit of coming close to honours of league titles or cup wins but always coming up short in the end. This isn’t as bad as it seems as long as Moratti only sees him as a short-term solution because with the chaos caused by Leonardo’s departure and Gasperini’s terrible era we need to be realistic and just set ourselves a target of qualifying for next seasons Champions league, anything beyond that would be a bonus and as much as I’d love to see our beloved club return to glory this season we need to settle the squad again and rebuild their shattered confidence, as Roberto Mancini said to the press recently Inter’s winning cycle has come to an end, as Interista we have to accept this fact and realise our priority now is to setup the new foundations to return the club to glory in the coming seasons.

So who is Claudio Ranieri?

The 59 year old coach was born in Rome on the 20th October 1951 and had a playing career as a defender playing for Roma, Catanzaro, Catania and Palermo during which time he hardly set the footballing world alight. But his coaching career has been a different matter, admittedly he’s hardly a Jose Mourinho or a Sir Alex Ferguson, but in his time he has coached some of the big clubs of Europe.

His managierial career started with a small side called Campania that he coached for just one season before moving to the then Serie C1 side Cagliari, where he made his name as a manager by getting them promoted to Serie A in successive seasons. His next job was to be at Napoli in 1991 and despite only guiding them to a fourth place position and no silverware he was responsible for replacing the legendary Argentinian Diego Maradona with another legendary player Gianfranco Zola.

In 1993 he returned to Serie B to take the bench of Fiorentina who he managed to gain promotion to the top flight with in his first season. Before he left the Viola in 1997 he managed to win them the 1996 Coppa Italia and also that year’s Supercoppa Italiana. When he did leave in 97 he took on what was his biggest club so far with his move to Valencia in La Liga where in his second season he took the Spanish club to not only to secure the Copa Del Rey but more surprisingly he guided them to qualify for the Champions League. After this came a season long spell at Atletico Madrid, this wasn’t to be a good time for him as during his time there the players were struggling on the pitch and the club went into administration and they were heading for relegation so Ranieri took the decision to jump ship before he was pushed.

This proved to be a good move for him as he then moved to Chelsea where he was instructed to reduce the average age of the squad which he did by bringing in to the club Frank Lampard, Emmanuel Petit, Boudewijn Zenden, Jesper Grønkjær and William Gallas spending £30 million. It was during his time at Chelsea that he gained his nickname ‘The Tinkerman’ due to him rotating his players in nearly every match. The beginning of the end of his Chelsea career came with the takeover by Russian Billionairre Roman Abramovich in 2003 who allowed him to bring in big names like ex Nerazzurri names like Juan Sebastian Veron and Hernan Crespo amongst others, spending a huge £120 million in the transfer window. He then went on to lead Chelsea to a Champions league semi-final. But this wasn’t good enough for the fickle Abramovich who in May 2004 replaced Ranieri with Jose Mourinho.

In June of 2004 he made a return to La Liga and his previous club Valencia where he replaced Rafa Benitez on a three-year contract only to be sacked eight months later for getting knocked out of the UEFA Cup. Two years later Ranieri returned to Italian football and coaching as he took over at a struggling Parma in February 2007 and saved them from relegation that year and was subsequently linked with jobs at several clubs including Palermo and Manchester City but to everyone’s surprise it was at Juventus where he spent the next two seasons entering into a war of words with Inter manager Jose Mourinho during that time, he was sacked from the Turin club in 2009 after Inter secured their 17th Scudetto much to Juventus’ disgust. His last job before becoming Inter head coach of course was with Roma where in 2010 he nearly destroyed Inter’s treble hopes with his Roman team but after a shock 4-3 defeat in February 2011 to Genoa he decided to hand in his resignation.

Team Nat From To Record
G W L D Win %
Campania Italy 1987 1988          
Cagliari Italy 1988 1991 72 23 19 30 31.94
Napoli Italy 1991 1993 68 25 19 24 36.76
Fiorentina Italy 1993 1997 140 56 34 50 40
Valencia Spain 1997 1999 76 35 26 15 46.05
Atlético Madrid Spain 1999 2000 38 9 18 11 23.68
Chelsea England 18 September 2000 31 May 2004 199 107 46 46 53.76
Valencia Spain 16 June 2004 25 February 2005 36 15 12 9 41.66
Parma Italy 12 February 2007 31 May 2007 16 7 6 3 43.75
Juventus Italy 1 July 2007 18 May 2009 92 45 17 30 48.91
Roma Italy 1 September 2009 21 February 2011 56 32 11 13 57.14

Now he is the head coach of what is arguably the biggest club of his career it remains to be seen how his theories and tactics will work with the Inter squad but from what I’ve seen his tactics will fit well with our players and as I’ve said before he’s an ideal coach to settle things back down after the chaos that was the Gasperini era. As such it is vitally important that us Interista show him that he has our support and that we trust in him to take our club back to the top where it belongs.

Ranieri’s Introduction Press Conference

“There is so much excitement in this and the reason I do this job is because of the thrills it gives you. I’m proud to be part of the Nerazzurri family”, said Claudio Ranieri, as he opened the press conference.

The new coach was then asked what approach he was going to take with Inter now: “There has been a lot of bad luck, misfortune and injury, now we have to regain our confidence and self-esteem and try and pick up some points. It’s the beginning of a new path; to win here with Inter would be splendid: a year and a half ago these lads were champions. I believe in their desire to react. They have slipped back but what’s important is to realise that and to fight back. I want to see that compact group again that never gave up which I saw when I played against them. We need to close in and stay compact and challenge for every ball. Now we need to think about getting results. That’s the most important thing: they are used to winning, so they just have to start doing it again.”

 “The first press conference always goes well: the journalists are all good, they ask and they want to know. Then we’ll see how the second one goes, and the third, but that’s all part of the job, at this stage we are vaccinated against them.” Claudio Ranieri told Inter Channel of his first impressions immediately after his meeting with the press as new coach of Inter, when he was officially presented in the press conference, which finished a short time ago at the Centro Sportivo Angelo Moratti.

There were many questions and the Nerazzurri coach replied with his thoughts, emotions and objectives for the future. There was one question he hadn’t been expecting, though. “I didn’t understand that question about the fans, because it implied that I am not welcome for some Inter supporters. I didn’t understand it because I can honestly say that whether I’m in Milan or elsewhere, I have always been respected.”

At this stage Roberto Scarpini passed on messages to Ranieri from Inter fans that had been sent to the studio, which describe the Inter coach as he really is, a well-mannered, well-behaved person and a very sporting adversary: “I think I’m like this all the time; everything I do, I do it with love and passion. Of course there were some skirmishes with José Mourinho, but this is all part of the logic in the press and we played on it, too. A verbal argument is one thing, the mutual respect which two people have always had for one another is something different.”

A striped blue and black shirt with his name on it was the first present Inter gave to the new coach. “Who would Claudio Ranieri be if he were still a player today? Chivu, an outside left. But what I can tell you now is that if I’m here today, it’s all thanks to Herrera: it was he who chose me from among a thousand little boys, If Helenio Herrera hadn’t been at Roma, I might not have been here today.”

An English television company was waiting to interview the coach after the exclusive on Inter Channel and Claudio Ranieri moved off with a smile: “I’d better go now. I have to speak English and if I don’t concentrate, people will think Mourinho was right when he said I only know how to say ‘good morning’ and ‘good afternoon’…[smiling, Ed].”

And so from all of us ‘Good Luck Mr Ranieri!’

About Don Nerazzurri

Huge fan of FC Internazionale Milano and founder of the Nerazzurri World blog, Inter is in my soul, cut me & I bleed black and blue! 'il Padrino' of the #InterFamily! C'e Solo l'Inter! Follow me on Twitter - @Don_Nerazzurri

Posted on September 22, 2011, in Coppa Italia, Serie A, Transfers, UEFA Champions League and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. haha! you are right, we do agree:)
    and, to be fair to Ranieri he is also a coach who because he takes the “clubs in transition” he tends to get falsely labeled. I would say Ranieri has never had the chance to stay at a club long enough to have a lasting impression, the longest stays he has are 4 year stints at Fiorentina which was glorius for that smaller club and with Chelsea, I feel he got the raw deal with ambromovich, who I must say is a true tinkerman, more than any coach I know of, but this is an Inter blog, so I stop there.

    Ranieri will do well, personally, Gasp realized the problem, with milito zarate pazzini, you have a top 3 with nagatomo, sneijder and forlan you have a midfield
    The problem is defense. that midfield and forward group is not defensively strong. That entire group runs to the opposing goal. So, the defense of inter must stay put and this goas against the style of maicon, lucio. I think those two have to go and be benched, I know , I know, I am a huge fan of lucio and maicon and what they have brought to Inter, but I think with the other players, a change is needed. Samuel is great, but he literally has grey hair. I think he must take a lesser role in the club, especially without a holding midfielder above him. Cordoba and Zanetti are the best for Inter’s interest as they are good senior captains and will not give ranieri the hell totti did, which was part of why ranieri had to leave roma.

    So, all in all I conjecture, Inter need to use a 3223
    Jonathan, Ranocchia, Nagatomo
    cambiasso muntari
    sniejder, forlan
    zarate, milito, pazzini

    yes the defensive line isnt so wide but it is faster while very inexperienced.
    But, with cambiasso and muntari on top of it, they do two things, one provide experience in front of ranocchia and a grit and strength plus good eyes to connect with sneijder or forlan
    That midfield is better as sniejder and forlan are with each other, as both have similar games, they can strike from distance and with milito above them and their sense of position, they can find the space to get good strikes and with zarate and pazzini up top they have another option to hold up the ball and another for a faster outlet.

    defensive subs Chivu, cordoba, samuel, lucio, maicon
    midfield subs motta, stankovic, obi, alvarez

    well we shall see:)

    • I get what you’re saying, but I don’t think a 3-2-2-3 formation would work at all, it’d be far too narrow. Nagatomo and Jonathan are forward running defensive players too like Maicon and Lucio so that would leve Ranocchia on his own at the back, which is an idea that scares the sh*t out of me 😉 Inter do need to do something about the old guard players and especially the defence but they also need to stick to formations that are proven for us i.e 4-3-1-2 or 4-2-3-1 which to be fair Raneiri will do 🙂

      • It is narrow but when you look at Inter in the run of play, without zanetti, lucio, samuel, maicon, cordoba, the remaining available defenders offer difficulty putting them in a 4. But, I thought about what you said, and ranocchia would be left alone wouldnt he. And, that is not a good idea, for any defender really. If it must be 4 at the back, then it has to be 433 [midfield 3 as a 12 and forward three as ] the starting group in my opinion should be

        jonathan chivu ranocchia nagatomo
        forlan sneijder
        pazzini zarate

        depending on the opposition milito can play behind or ahead of pazzini and zarate.
        Forlan and sneijder can work out the forward midfeld space, which if they do is the true advantage of forlan coming that has yet to materialize. HE can score from range and make excellent passes just like sneijder but can interchange with milito , who can pay quick passes at times. Zarate has proven to me he must start because he can also hold up the ball, pazzini’s pace, positioning makes him a must start.
        stankovic, muntari, obi, motta when healthy, come off the bench for midfield
        lucio, samuel, zanetti, maicon when healthy, cordoba come off the bench for defense

        the one thing I like about that backline is while it is inexperienced, they could be the second coming of lucio, maicon and zanetti
        jonathan has very good speed, naagtomo is being groomed by zanetti in his play, i can see it. Chivu is not as big a player and not used to running from the central defense like Lucio but this is why Ranieri is a good coach, he grooms teams, this team has players who could use some grooming. and with cambiasso just in front of them he can calm chivu down and aid ranocchia. plus, with forlan and sneijder they will work out the space and will enjoy being right behind the forward three.

        For a 4231 same backline but cambiasso and muntari ahead of the backline. Then pazzini sneijder and zarate behind milito
        I dont like forlan up top by himself, and sneijder and forlan have yet to prove to me that they can play by themselves together yet, let alone with a third person on a line. If so, pazzini or zarate or milito sit down and forlan goes into their place.

        for a 4312 which I think Inter can’t do with this roster so easily. if forlan and sneijder play, they like to play in the forward defensive space and are not the greatest defenders. With that formation, milito has to sit, then you have
        the same back four and zanetti cambiasso stankovic in the midfield all three can pass, are gritty and provide strength in the back and will keep posession
        Then sneijder and in front of him are forlan and zarate/pazzini. If milito plays, then 21 instead of 12 and forlan and sneijder play behind him.

        We shall see:)

      • Very good points as always mate 🙂 I definitely think that Zanetti is trying to teach Nagatomo his style and he is of course versitile enough to be Zanetti’s natural heir on the pitch, though since I first saw him play for Inter i’ve been a fan of the Japanese wingback. I’m not going to comment more on your suggested formations as once Ranieri has settled in I plan on doing a piece about his tactics and what would work for him, but I can say I will be taking the points you’ve raised on board for when I write it 🙂

  2. Hey DOn thanks for following , am I following you now, wordpress changed their tab bar format recently, did you notice?

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