Eamon Dunphy has little sympathy for Claudio Ranieri, saying that he would also have sacked the Italian had he been the owner of Leicester City.

Leicester defied huge odds to claim the Premier League trophy last year under the guidance of Ranieri but are now locked in a relegation battle following a huge downturn in form.

And RTÉ soccer analyst Dunphy believes Ranieri’s input in Leicester’s success was “passive” and that Craig Shakespeare, now caretaker manager, was more influential.

Dunphy said: “Ranieri only arrived at the club at the end of June last year and the real work was done by Mickey Walsh’s brother (Steve), who was the chief scout, and Craig Shakespeare.

“The players were there and Ranieri’s role was I think was more passive.

“His task was I think to avoid relegation. He kept saying “40 points will do me” and the players played above themselves.

“It is freakish, I said last week – anyone who can explain Leicester winning last season is bluffing. It was a mystery, a miracle almost.

Dunphy then cited Raneiri’s summer spending in the summer transfer market as a reason for this season’s downfall.

He continued: “He spent £80m last summer and he bought rubbish. He’s changed the team persistently all through the season, he’s changed the training – he’s changed lots of things.

“He didn’t do anything last year, very much. Same team every week, no injuries, no problems.

“They’re facing relegation and the consequences of that – all these players are on huge contracts now going into the Championship with guys on Premier League money and all the money and infrastructure of the club depending on them being in the Premier League.

“If it was my club I’d have sacked him.”

Dunphy did admit that the sacking was tough on the Italian and that “he has made some extremely eccentric decisions, and it’s very harsh,” but said it’s what is to be expected “if you’re not getting performances from your players and if the performance-levels have dipped so dramatically.”

Dunphy was also of the thinking that player input contributed to the sacking.

He continued: “I believe that the players did have an input. I think that they were fed up with his eccentricity.”