Ranieri previews Serie A season

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With the new Serie A season set to kick off this weekend, Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri has given his predictions for the upcoming campaign.

The Foxes boss has managed Italian sides such as Napoli, Fiorentina, Parma, Juventus, Inter Milan and Roma, and has tipped the latter to challenge holding champions Juve for the Scudetto.

"In my view Roma and Juventus are ahead of everyone else," he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "Juve are facing a renewal period, but how can you not tip a team that has won four titles in a row?

"Roma are potentially the strongest team of them all now they have a real centre-forward like Edin Dzeko, a talent like Mohamed Salah and goalkeeper like Wojciech Szczesny.

"As for the third side, Sinisa Mihajlovic’s Milan really intrigues me. Silvio Berlsuconi got back to spending and you can tell.

"Inter’s pre-season results shouldn’t be a warning. I trust Roberto Mancini and his experience. When you change a side that much, you cannot be impatient too.

"Napoli are another team to watch out for. Maurizio Sarri deserved a Serie A job a lot earlier, as his Empoli played really well. If the players put themselves at Sarri’s disposal and absorb his ideas, then Napoli can go far.

"Fiorentina have Paulo Sousa. His Basel was at times spectacular, but also solid. Torino will have something good too this term, as Giampiero Ventura is their real star man. Frosinone and Carpi prove that passion and planning can get you places."

One team that Ranieri doesn’t fancy is Lazio, who finished third last team and reached the Coppa Italia final, but the boss thinks that "playing on two fronts is not easy. Participating in the Champions League will be the key to the season."