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Premier League: Watford sack manager Claudio Ranieri; Roy Hodgson the favourite to take over

Image Credit: Watford FC

Watford have sacked their Italian manager Claudio Ranieri after a run of disappointing results that have left the club in the relegation zone. Ranieri is the second casualty this season after the sacking of Xisco Munoz.

The Hornets are currently languishing in 19th in the Premier League table after their 3-0 defeat to Norwich at Vicarage Road. The former Leicester manager was at the helm for just 14 games after Spanish manager Xisco Munoz was fired less than 10 games into the season.

A Watford statement read: "The Hornets' Board recognises Claudio as a man of great integrity and honour, who will always be respected here at Vicarage Road for his efforts in leading the team with dignity.

"However the Board feels that, with nearly half of the Premier League campaign remaining, a change in the Head Coach position now will give a new appointment sufficient time to work with a talented squad to achieve the immediate goal of retaining Premier League status.

"No further club comment will be made until this new appointment is confirmed in due course."

Ranieri took over when Watford were 14th in the table and won just two games in his 14-game tenure. The club has slipped into the relegation zone leapfrogged by both Norwich and Newcastle, who won their game against Leeds.

The club has also crashed out of the FA Cup losing 4-1 to Leicester in the 3rd round. Ranieri's two victories came in a 5-2 win against Everton and a memorable 4-1 victory against Manchester United.

The Italian was the 14th permanent manager in the Pozzo family era which began in 2012. Former Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson is the favourite to take over at Vicarage Road. Hodgson left Crystal Palace last season after being replaced by Patrick Vieira.

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