Leicester star Jamie Vardy said he has received death threats in the aftermath of Ranieri's departure, per the Telegraph's Matt Law:
On social media, you name it—walking down the street. To be honest, I get them every week. Football fans don't seem to like me. I just get on with it, but when people are trying to cut your missus up while she's driving along, with the kids in the back of the car. It's not the best. It's happened plenty of times. It is terrifying.
While Vardy wasn't solely responsible, many blamed he and the rest of Leicester's squad for the poor form that saw the club hovering near the relegation zone.
After scoring 24 goals in the Premier League to help Leicester win the title in 2015/16, Vardy had five goals in 22 league appearances prior to Ranieri's ouster. Riyad Mahrez was also a shell of the playmaker who won the African Footballer of the Year for 2016.
Gary Lineker summed up the thoughts of those who disagreed with getting rid of a manager who helped deliver one of the most improbable title triumphs in recent memory:
Gary Lineker @GaryLineker
After all that Claudio Ranieri has done for Leicester City, to sack him now is inexplicable, unforgivable and gut-wrenchingly sad.2/23/2017, 8:10:04 PM
Further inflaming the negative perception around the Leicester squad, the Sun's Neil Ashton and Neil Custis reported in February the players went to club ownership to push for a change of manager.
Leicester's form under Craig Shakespeare has arguably justified the club's decision to sack Ranieri, however. Leicester are riding a four-game winning streak, which included a 2-0 defeat of Sevilla to send the Foxes through to the Champions League quarterfinals.