Ranieri praises referee after Arsenal draw

The Italian was happy with the official’s performance despite seeing his side denied two spot-kicks but felt his team deserved more than just a point against the Gunners

Claudio Ranieri refused to criticise referee Mark Clattenburg after Leicester City had two penalty appeals waved away during their 0-0 draw against Arsenal.

The Premier League champions are still searching for the first win of their title defence, following last weekend’s 2-1 loss at Hull City, and they could not find a way through in a game of few chances at the King Power Stadium.

Danny Drinkwater went down under a lunging tackle from Laurent Koscielny in the 43rd minute and Ahmed Musa’s lively cameo from the bench featured an untidy challenge from Hector Bellerin on the Nigeria international in the box.

“I am not a manager who says ‘oh there was a penalty’ and cries. For me it is okay,” Ranieri told a post-match news conference.

“The referee made a very good performance and for me a penalty is when the referee whistles. He didn’t whistle, so it wasn’t.”

Ranieri was satisfied with his side’s display throughout a match that only truly threatened to open up during the closing stages.

“It was a good performance. The result is good. I think we deserved a little more, but it’s okay,” he added.

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“They kept more possession, they were very dangerous but not with a clear chance. We kept less possession, but we know this, and we created a lot more chances to score and win the match.

“I am very happy for the fight, for the spirit, for the union of the team.”

The major stain on Leicester’s day was the sight of Nampalys Mendy limping off following an assured full debut in central midfield.

“I don’t know,” Ranieri said when asked how serious the Frenchman’s injury was. “

“Now, of course we block [protect] his ankle, he twisted. Tomorrow we will check everything, I hope nothing serious.

“Of course he, we have blocked the ankle, he is not happy.

“I’m not so happy. Now, we do not know if he can recover for the next week. Tomorrow, we will see.”

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