MONACO (Reuters) - If Monaco are to be successful they need to supply striker Radamel Falcao with the ball more often, coach Claudio Ranieri said on Friday.
Falcao's eight league goals have helped the wealthy club challenge champions and Ligue 1 leaders Paris St Germain. They trail PSG on goal difference with both sides unbeaten on 25 points from 11 games.
However, the Colombian, who joined from Atletico Madrid for 60 million euros ($81.57 million) in the close season, has on occasion struggled to link up with his team mates on the pitch and has had 29 attempts on goal compared to 50 for PSG's Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
"The team has to provide more support to Radamel Falcao by giving him more balls," Ranieri told a news conference ahead of Sunday's trip to third-placed Lille, who are two points behind Monaco.
"It's a necessity if we want to be in better positions in the last 20 meters and more effective," the Italian added.
"We know that the last pass is the more difficult to do... but if he's set up as he should be, we know that he can score and turn situations round."
"It's something important for the squad because he's able to boost our confidence and our collective strength."
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Reporting by Etienne Ballerini; Writing by Gregory Blachier; Editing by Alison Wildey