Jamie Vardy received 'death threats' after Ranieri sacked
Leicester City striker denies reports of a dressing room revolt and says reaction to managerial change was 'terrifying'
Leicester striker Jamie Vardy says he received death threats after the sacking of Claudio Ranieri, following claims that he was a leading figure in the alleged dressing revolt that prompted the Premier League champions to part company with the manager guided them to glory last season.
And Vardy, who is in the England squad that faces Germany in a friendly on Wednesday night, said it wasn't just him who was targeted. "The story is out there, then people pick it up and jump on it and you're getting death threats about your family, kids, everything," he said. "I try to get on with it but when people are trying to cut your missus up while she's driving along with the kids in the back of the car, it's not the best. It's happened plenty of times. It is terrifying."
Asked to expand on the death threats, Vardy explained that they had been made "on social media, walking down the street, you name it". He said the threats were all the more painful to bear because contrary to rumour, he had not been in any way responsible for Ranieri's departure after a slump in form that saw Leicester slip towards the relegation zone.
"Apparently the meeting that got him sacked I read one story that said it was straight after the Sevilla game," he said, referring to the first leg of the Champions League last 16 encounter last month. "It said I was personally involved in a meeting when I was actually sat in anti-doping for three hours. The stories were quite hurtful. A lot of false accusations were being thrown out there and there's nothing us, as players, could do about it."
Vardy also rubbished claims of a players revolt against Ranieri. "No, not at all," when asked if there had been dissent within the ranks. "Basically if there was an issue you went and did it in the gaffer's office, man to man. Or you did it on the tactics board because he was happy for you to come in and put your opinion across."
But according to BBC Sport, it was "negative reaction" of some Leicester players after the 2-1 defeat in Sevilla that prompted the club's chairman to fire Ranieri and replace him with CraigShakespeare.
The change has certainly had the desired effect with the Foxes unbeaten in their last four matches and the only English club to reach the quarter-final of the Champions League after beating Sevilla in the second leg of their tie.
Vardy admitted that the sacking of Ranieri was "hard" to take. "What he did for Leicester was unbelievable and nobody would have expected that [title] in a million years," he said. "We can only thank him for that. The way this season has gone, players never seem to be the ones who get the sack. It always falls on the manager and that is what has happened. We are all sincerely gutted that it did."