Leonardo Ulloa will play for Leicester again after transfer blocked - Ranieri

LEICESTER -- Claudio Ranieri has insisted he has "no issue" with Leicester City's Leonardo Ulloa and that the forward will play for the club again, despite the Argentine claiming earlier this week that he would not kick another ball for the Premier League champions after being "betrayed" by the manager.

Leicester rejected three bids for Ulloa, 30, ahead of the Jan. 31 transfer deadline, with Sunderland failing with an £8 million offer for the player.

The former Brighton & Hove Albion striker, a key figure in last season's title success, has scored just one goal in 19 appearances for Leicester this term and has become a peripheral figure as Ranieri's team have slumped to just two points above the relegation zone.

But despite Ulloa's outspoken attempts to force a move -- the player tweeted his anger towards Ranieri -- the Italian manager insists he has no qualms about selecting him again.

"Will he play? Why not?" Ranieri said. "He will play, don't worry. He is a professional, 100 percent.

"The situation is a normal situation, we didn't want to sell him.

"Of course, he is frustrated. He wants to play and he wanted to go. But there is no issue. He tried to push hard [to leave], but he is OK."

Ranieri is confident that Ulloa will be committed to the team when he does return to action.

"He is a fantastic man, a good player and good pro. When he is ready, he will have a chance to play.

"I don't know if he can give more than before because he always gives 120 percent. He is a fantastic man who has given a lot for Leicester.

"I am waiting for him to come back to us and I hope he can be better during these weeks."

Leicester face Manchester United at the King Power Stadium on Sunday without Ulloa and with Ranieri confirming that £29m club record signing Islam Slimani is also unavailable due to a groin injury.

"Slimani is getting better and he has trained very hard," Ranieri said. "But I don't want to risk him on Sunday or in the cup. I want him to be ready 100 percent."