New Watford boss Claudio Ranieri has promised he will work “hard and fast” to push the club towards Premier League security.
He replaces former Italy Chelsea and Leicester manager Jisco Munoz, who was sacked on Sunday after just 10 months in charge, signing a two-year deal as the new head coach at Vicarage Road.
Ranieri is 15th in the table with seven points from seven league matches this season.
The 69-year-old famous Leicester won the Premier League title in 2016 and knows he will have to run when Watford return to action after an international break at home to Liverpool.
“Watford is a very good club for me. I wanted to return to England and I am very, very happy and want to do my best,” Ranieri said on the Watford club’s website. “I think everyone in England knows me from Chelsea or Leicester, I want a team that tries to score goals. We have very good players in front of us, very fast. I want to close the place a little bit more and help the defensive line.
“A lot of players have come, a new manager, and we need a little bit of time but I know we don’t have time in the Premier League. That’s why we have to work hard.
“I hope to give them (fans) a very good show.
“They know we play against Liverpool and need their support from the first to the last second of the match. There are certain moments against each team where we are under pressure.”
Ranieri thinks Watford – who started the campaign against Aston Villa and won 1-1 with co-promoting Norwich before Munoz’s departure – is a key part of the squad capable of holding themselves back.
“I’ve seen all the matches in the Premier League (so far). I think we have very good players, I have philosophy, I have mentality and we have to work hard to change a little bit.”
“I don’t start working with all the boys (yet) (because) I have some injured players and some international players. We are doing well, a very good group so far and I am very confident.
“It’s not easy because the next match is Liverpool – one of the best teams in Europe. Of course I have to work fast, try to give my best, and my players will understand me very soon. The first idea is to stay safe – 40 points is very important. Then, we’ll see. “
Ranieri, who was sacked by the Foxes just nine months after winning the title after a poor start to the 2011ier-1 campaign, became Watford’s 1st permanent manager since taking control of the Pozzo family club in 2012.
The Italians count on the list of his former clubs such as Napoli, Fiorentina, Valencia, Atletico Madrid, Juventus, Roma, Inter Milan and Monaco.
Ranieri also led the Greek national team and was in charge of a short spell at Fulham during 2018-19, which lasted only 106 days.
Although he could have taken a good earning break from the game, Ranieri is enjoying the opportunity to get back into the dugout again.
“I love football, football is my life and I have a long future. It’s the environment, the adrenaline. It’s in my blood,” he said. “For the sake of the fans I can say – we work hard, the campaign will be very difficult, but we are confident.”
On Thursday, Watford announced the signing of Cameroon defender Nicholas Nakaulu.
Ier agreed a deal by the end of the season for his first arrival in the 1-year-old free agent Ranieri’s term.