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As a gesture of goodwill to recently-crowned champions Inter Milan, the well-respected Italian, who famously led Leicester City to an unexpected Premier League title in 2016, asked his team to perform a guard of honour ahead of kick-off.
This might just be the friendliest guard of honour you will ever see. Brilliant from both sides.
Bringing English football tradition back to Serie A- ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) May 9, 2021
Grazie, Claudio :heart: pic.twitter.com/iyRaX3hfxi
Never thought I'd see the day my team would get a guard of honour :sob::sob::sob: pic.twitter.com/8alOrh6HDi- Uncle Sharma *19* (@RSharmzz) May 8, 2021
GUARD OF HONOUR. Stile Sampdoria :black_circle::large_blue_circle::flag_it::one::nine: :clap::clap: pic.twitter.com/d7IymBcuxa- Daniele Mari (@marifcinter) May 8, 2021
After the full-time whistle, Ranieri explained the gesture towards Antonio Conte's side.
"I told Quagliarella and the lads it would be good to mark the occasion the way they do in England, and they immediately agreed with me." Ranieri told Sky Sport Italia after the game.
"This is sport. I believe sport should be in these tiny gestures, especially for a team that won with four rounds to spare.
"We had it at Leicester, receiving the guard of honour at Chelsea in the next game."
A guard of honour for Leicester and Claudio Ranieri. :clap: https://t.co/hxOgd7vtwN- Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) May 15, 2016
Claudio Ranieri walks out to a guard of honour from the club that sacked him.- Football Tweet (@Football__Tweet) May 15, 2016
Football, bloody football. :raised_hands: pic.twitter.com/1ulXJfVOjH
In terms of the result, Inter Milan smashed five past Ranieri's side as goals from Alexis Sanchez (2), Lautaro Martinez, Roberto Gagliardini and Andrea Pinamonti sealed another three points.
Once again, the former Leicester City and Chelsea boss showed his class after the full-time whistle, admitting the champions deserved their win.
"It's a pity, as we conceded straight away and then just as we got back into it, we then conceded another straight away.
"Inter were playing on the wings of enthusiasm and we were not our usual selves. All credit to Inter, and a bit of it was our fault.
"We wanted to do well, because we knew that Inter wanted to celebrate and we didn't want to be the victims.
"We know often Inter can sit back and hit you on the counter, but this time they played with far more freedom and enjoyment than usual. We just watched."
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