Ranieri ‘understands’ if Inler wants Villa move

Date published: Wednesday 23rd December 2015 9:21

Gokhan Inler: Allowed to leave Leicester

Claudio Ranieri would prefer to keep his Leicester City squad together in January but would understand if Gokhan Inler wanted to join Aston Villa.

Inler has started just twice in the Premier League for the Foxes after a summer switch from Napoli, with Villa boss Remi Garde tracking the 31-year-old to potentially aid their relegation fight.

Garde said: “I’m aware of this (Inler’s) situation because I’ve looked at all the players who could be interested in this situation because of the Euros. I don’t want to say to you where he is on my list.

“Of course, every player who will play Euros I am interested in because they are good players. It doesn’t mean they will come or that I have already called them. But I know him very well.”

Inler is happy at Leicester despite a lack of action but, as Switzerland captain, knows he needs regular football to safeguard his place ahead of Euro 2016.

And with the Foxes top of the Premier League by two points, Ranieri would listen to requests to move for Inler, Andrej Kramaric and Yohan Benalouane if he can find replacements.

“I would like to maintain everyone but I understand if they want to go. I hope to replace them if they do,” he said.

The Foxes have only been beaten by second-placed Arsenal in the Premier League so far this season.

The Gunners won 5-2 win at the King Power Stadium in September and Ranieri believes Arsene Wenger’s side are title favourites.

He said: “I agree with these people when they say Arsenal are favourites or City are favourites.

“Our team is a young team and it’s the first time we’re top of the league. I would sign a guarantee now to stay above Arsenal, I want to stay above Arsenal at the end of the league. If not at the top, very close.”

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