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Ranieri: Monaco Players Struggling to Adapt

  • Reuters, Wednesday, November 6, 2013 4:19 PM
Claudio Ranieri has said his Monaco side must toughen up if it is to challenge for the Ligue 1 title this season, after his team lost its second straight game, 2-0, at Lille on Saturday. The club, which is bankrolled by Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev, spent more than $200 million on new players over the summer. Ranieri lamented his squad’s lack of familiarity with the league’s physical demands.

"What we need to correct is our mentality," Ranieri said ahead of Friday's home clash with Evian Thonon Gaillard. The loss dropped Monaco to third place in Ligue 1, three days after the principality club conceded its first defeat of the season in a League Cup match at Stade Reims.

"Our opponents have been more aggressive. We will have to be more aggressive," Ranieri said. "This happened because many of our players are just discovering Ligue 1, and they need time to adjust to the way they can respond [to the league's physical nature]. [Joao] Moutinho, for instance, has been suffering against aggressive opponents. He needs to adjust and understand how we play in France."

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