Ranieri set to quit as Roma slide goes on

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FORMER Chelsea manager Claudio Ranieri has offered his resignation as coach of Roma, according to reports in Italy.

The move comes after Ranieri’s side surrendered a 3-0 lead to lose 4-3 at Genoa yesterday, their third straight Serie A defeat.

According to reports, Ranieri told his players: “I am resigning. I have always thought of the best for Roma.”

The club did not immediately accept Ranieri’s resignation and an announcement is expected sometime today. “We will pause for reflection,” said director Gian Paolo Montali. “We need to examine things carefully, but we will decide everything in between tonight and tomorrow.”

Recent reports have suggested Ranieri has fallen out with key players amid Roma’s lengthy slide, which has left them down in eighth place.

Celtic manager Neil Lennon insists he is taking nothing for granted in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League title race despite an emphatic 3-0 victory over Rangers at Parkhead today.

A double from former Scunthorpe striker Gary Hooper and an Old Firm derby debut goal from Kris Commons secured a comfortable win for the Hoops.

Defending champions Rangers were well below-par as Celtic cruised to a victory that allowed them to move eight points clear at the top of the table, although Rangers still have two games in hand.

But, as far as Lennon is concerned, there is still far too much football to be played before assumptions can be made about the destination of the trophy this season.

The Celtic boss said: “People might say it was a pivotal day. But we are just very pleased... no, we are more than pleased, because that was emphatic.

“There are still 12 or 13 games to go in the season. In 2005, we had six or seven games left and still lost the league so there is still a lot of football to be played.

“It’s going to get a bit more fraught and tense between now and the end of the season and I’m hoping we have the mentality to handle that.”

Hibernian manager Colin Calderwood hailed his side’s grit and determination after they further eased their relegation fears with a late winner at St Mirren Park.

Hibernian - for whom Frank Dickoh scored an 87th minute winner, have now won three consecutive Premier League games and are 11 points above bottom club Hamilton.