Sunday March 7 2021
Ranieri: 'Gabbiadini's left foot...'

Claudio Ranieri admits Cagliari deserved the 2-2 draw, although Sampdoria regret conceding with the last kick of the game. ‘Manolo Gabbiadini has a left foot like an artist’s brush.’

It was a topsy-turvy game, as the Sardinians took the lead and dominated for long periods, then two goals in three minutes from Bartosz Bereszynski and Manolo Gabbiadini turned it around.

With the last kick of the game, Radja Nainggolan’s scorcher was deflected in to equalise.

“Looking at the whole match, the draw was the right result. The problem is that we had the ball with 20 seconds to go and we should’ve done anything other than give it back. Maybe kick it into the stands, deflate the ball, anything!” joked Ranieri on Sky Sport Italia.

Ranieri changed the tactics at half-time, moving to a three-man defence, which he had also used against Genoa midweek.

“Cagliari had the superiority in midfield in the first half, so they were cutting us out of the game. I didn’t like it because we were unable to create chances.

“We did much better after the break, Gaston Ramirez had the right attitude, we pushed Cagliari back into their own half. They were still dangerous, as they will be with the likes of Joao Pedro.

“The strange thing is that Cagliari are in that position, considering they have some magnificent players.”

The other substitute who changed the game was Gabbiadini, who scored his first goal of the season with a thunderbolt.

“He is a wonderful lad and an exemplary professional. We had waited for him to recover, in the end he needed surgery. I told him in training to take his time, not to worry and try to go for goal when he feels like it.

“He’s a generous lad, he can play in various different roles and I think he scored 10-11 goals last season, so we really did miss him. Manolo has a left foot like an artist’s brush, he can do anything with it.”