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Ranieri pleased with gritty win

By Football News



Monaco coach Claudio Ranieri hailed his team's fighting qualities after they edged Saints-Etienne 2-1 on Saturday.

The Ligue 1 leaders needed an 87th-winner from Lucas Ocampos to secure the points at the Stade Louis II.

Romain Hamouma had equalised for the visitors on 49 minutes, cancelling out Yannick Ferreira Carrasco's first-half opener.

Ranieri was delighted with the win and particularly pleased his team managed to adapt to a tactical change late on.

"Sometimes we get the result, sometimes we don't but tonight we managed to get a hard-fought win," he said.

"I was very pleased that the team scored at in the final moments of the game and that goal could prove good for us.

"I made a late change to take off a defensive midfielder for a striker and the team understood the change and what I wanted from them in the final moments.

"That was very pleasing and good to see."

Saint-Etienne are winless in their past four league matches but troubled Monaco on the counter-attack.

Ranieri paid tribute to Christophe Galtier's men but said he was unhappy with the way his team started the second half.

"It was a good game and I have to give credit to Saint-Etienne who played very well," he said.

"It was a good test for us tonight because they were playing quickly in counter-attack and we had to deal with that pace.

"I think that during the first part of the second half we were not good, but we recovered well in the end to win it.

"I have seen my team playing well and keeping the ball which is great.

"I have seen my squad focused on doing a good job and that is a great sight. Saint-Etienne is a good team so to win is a good result for us."