Shakespeare denies he's the reason Ranieri left Leicester

Leicester City boss Craig Shakespeare has rejected the suggestion that a falling-out with Claudio Ranieri led to the Italian's exit from the club.

Ranieri left in February less than a year after guiding Leicester to a shock Premier League title triumph, with a number of reports at the time suggesting that senior players had called for him to be sacked after growing disillusioned with his methods.

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The 65-year-old gave an interview on Monday in which he denied that any players had pushed for his dismissal, though he said that "someone behind" him may have been working against him.

Shakespeare, however, has rubbished the idea that a conflict between Ranieri and himself was behind the change in manager.

"We have never had any arguments or hard feelings," Shakespeare said ahead of Wednesday's Champions League quarter-final first leg against Atletico Madrid.

"Free speech is there for everybody. I don't have any problem with that. I have a clear conscience.

"Claudio was in good humour. He came across exactly as I know him."

Goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel said he had not watched the interview with Sky Sports but insisted that the squad had nothing but respect for Ranieri.

"I haven't seen it. We've always had the utmost respect for Claudio and for what he did for the club," he said.

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