Claudio Ranieri appointed new Watford manager

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Claudio Ranieri has been appointed as the new manager of Watford, as the veteran Italian coach is back in the Premier League.

Dilly ding, dilly dong.

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Ranieri, 69, has signed a two-year contract in charge of the Hornets, as he replaces Xisco Munoz. The Hornets added Paolo Benetti, Carlo Cornacchia and Carlo Spignoli to their coaching staff to assist Ranieri.

One day after firing inexperienced coach Xisco Munoz, Premier League new boys Watford have gone for a veteran coach to lead them to safety.

Watford go for experience

The Italian coach was Sampdoria boss until this summer, and his immediate task is to keep Watford in the Premier League.

Claudio Ranieri has been in a similar situation before at Leicester City, and ended up winning them the Premier League title in 2015-16. Watford will be hoping for a similar impact…

The former Chelsea, Fulham, Roma, Parma, Juventus, Inter Milan, Monaco, Greece and Nantes boss (among others) has a reputation for making team tough to beat, solid defensively and being clinical on the counter.

That persuaded Fulham to hire Ranieri in 2018, but he didn’t last the season as they were relegated. That said, his most recent stop at Sampdoria saw him back to his best as they were a solid midtable team in Serie A.

Watford’s owners, the Pozzo family, have a reputation for hiring and firing managers. It is what they do and, for the most part, it has worked really well over the last few years.

Let’s see if their 14th permanent manager in the 11 years they’ve owned Watford works out.

Can Watford stay up?

On paper this Watford squad isn’t as strong as when they were last in the Premier League and aside from Ismaila Sarr and perhaps Emmanuel Dennis creating chances and scoring goals, they look set for a season of struggle.

They added Moussa Sissoko and Danny Rose to bring extra experience to the squad and their wins against Aston Villa and Norwich City were decent enough, as they exceeded the expectations of most early in the season.

That said, their schedule early in the season was rather favorable, and they now face a string of tough games as they play all of Liverpool, Everton, Arsenal, Man United, Leicester, Chelsea and Man City in their next eight games.

Claudio Ranieri has to pull off a few surprises in the next few months to get Watford in a good position. We all know he can set up a team to defend and let’s see if he can inspire this Watford team.