New Watford boss Claudio Ranieri will be hoping to continue his incredible Premier League home record against Liverpool as he returns to the Premier League this weekend.
The Italian is back in the English top-flight for a fourth time after stints at Chelsea, Leicester and Fulham.
His first test since succeeding Xisco Munoz at Watford is hosting Liverpool at Vicarage Road which some might consider a baptism of fire.
But Ranieri has won four of his five league home games against the Merseysiders across two clubs in England, losing just once.
In fact, his record means the 69-year-old has the highest home win rate for managers that have played over five games against the Reds in Premier League history.
He began building his domestic career against Liverpool just weeks after he was first appointed Chelsea manager in September 2000.
Just 13 days after his arrival, Ranieri’s new-look Blues beat Gerard Houllier’s Reds 3-0 after an early Sander Westerveld own-goal.
The following season, Chelsea dismantled Liverpool 4-0 at Stamford Bridge in December with Gary McAllister even missing a penalty for the visitors.
The two sides had to wait until May 2003 to meet again in SW6 in the Premier League where the Londoners again emerged victorious.
Chelsea had to come from behind with goals from Marcel Desailly and Jesper Gronkjaer cancelling out Sami Hyypia’s early strike.
Liverpool’s sole Premier League away win against Ranieri came just three months before he was sacked by Roman Abramovich.
Bruno Cheyrou’s first league goal for the Anfield outfit ensured a narrow 1-0 win in which El-Hadji Diouf was sent off late on.
Ranieri ultimately returned to the Premier League with Leicester almost a decade later to extend his home form against Liverpool.
The ex-Roma boss only played his favourite opponents at the King Power Stadium once during his memorable stint in the East Midlands.
A stunning second-half double from Jamie Vardy – including that volley – gave the Foxes a 2-0 win during their title winning season in 2016.
Ranieri ultimately missed the chance to face Liverpool at Craven Cottage during his brief four month spell at Fulham in the 2018/19 season.
Yet despite his impressive home record, ‘The Tinkerman’ does still have to be wary of the six-time Champions League winners this weekend with the clash live on talkSPORT.
The last four managers to face Liverpool in their first game in charge of a club in the Premier League have all lost.
Manuel Pellegrini (West Ham, 2018), Daniel Farke (Norwich, 2019), Nigel Pearson (Watford, 2019) and Marcelo Bielsa (Leeds, 2020) all fell to defeat.
However, ironically, the last manager to beat Liverpool on their Premier League debut was Ranieri’s successor at Leicester – Craig Shakespeare.
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- West Brom v Birmingham – 20:00, Championship – talkSPORT 2 EXCLUSIVE
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- Fulham v QPR – 12:30, Championship – talkSPORT 2 EXCLUSIVE
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