International

Mancini given 'dream' job of rebuilding Italy

2018-05-15 10:30
Roberto Mancini.(Getty Images)

Rome -Roberto Mancini will hold his first press conference on Tuesday a day after being handed his "dream" job as Italy head coach with the task of reviving Azzurri fortunes six months after their shock failure to qualify for the World Cup.

Italy have been without a permanent coach since Gian Piero Ventura was sacked after the four-time world champions failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1958.

Mancini - former coach of Manchester City and Inter Milan - will meet the media for the first time as Italy boss at 12:00 at the national team's training centre at Coverciano near Florence.

"Roberto is the new coach of Italy, it's done," Italian FA commissioner Roberto Fabbricini declared after Mancini signed his new deal in Rome on Monday night.

"There is satisfaction, also on the part of Mancini - his enthusiasm was decisive in the choice.

"Roberto had a great desire to sit on the Azzurri bench, he proved that in a concrete way."

The two-year contract reportedly worth €2 million a year will see Mancini lead Italy to Euro 2020 with the option to extend until June 2022 before the World Cup in Qatar.

The Italian federation had been looking for a prestigious coach to rebuild an Azzurri side decimated after their playoff defeat to Sweden in the San Siro last November.

The names of former Bayern Munich coach Carlo Ancelotti and Chelsea boss Antonio Conte had also been touted, with Ancelotti reported to have said "no".

Mancini had shown an early interest in taking over the national side and was ready to sever his lucrative contract with Zenit Saint Petersburg.

He will give up a reported 13 million in wages over the two remaining years on his Zenit contract to do national service.

After his three-year contract with the Russian club was officially terminated by mutual consent on Sunday, Mancini flew immediately to Rome on Monday morning declaring at the airport he was "happy to be back in Italy".

He signed his new deal later in the day.

His task will be to rebuild and qualify Italy for the 2020 European Championships, with his first match in charge a friendly on May 28 against Saudi Arabia in Switzerland.

"It went the way we wanted, we are happy and Roberto is happy," Fabbricini told journalists.

"We'll explain everything about the contract on Tuesday, he's very happy and so are we."

He will also prepare Italy for a friendly against France on June 1 in Turin which could be the final international game for goalkeeping legend Gianluigi Buffon.

Mancini's first squad will be eagerly awaited and is expected to see the return of Nice forward Mario Balotelli, who he coached at Inter Milan and Manchester City. Balotelli has not played for Italy since the 2014 World Cup.

In Mancini, Italy have a coach with a solid track record as a title-winner with 13 trophies in club football.

He led Manchester City to their first English league title in 44 years in 2012, and won three Serie A titles with Inter Milan. He also won Italian Cups with Inter, Fiorentina and Lazio.

Since leaving England in 2013, Mancini also managed Galatasaray, who he lead to a Turkish Cup title, and Inter Milan before joining Zenit in June 2017.

Zenit finished fifth in the Russian Premier League, failing to qualify for the Champions League but qualifying for the Europa League.

Mancini, a former Lazio and Sampdoria forward, had said coaching the national side would be "extraordinary" and would fulfil his dream of winning the World Cup.

He never became a regular with Italy having a love-hate relationship with the national side during his 10-year international career, during which he won 36 caps and scored four goals.

He reached the semi-finals of Euro 1988, and was in the squad that finished third in the 1990 World Cup on home soil.

Luigi di Biagio had stepped up from the Under-21s to take interim charge of the senior national side but will now make way for Mancini.

A fact-file of the career of Roberto Mancini:

Born: November 27, 1964

Birthplace: Jesi, Italy

1981: Makes debut for Bologna as 17-year-old.

1982: Signs for Sampdoria. Scores four goals in 22 matches in his first season and wins the Coppa Italia in 1985, 1988 and 1989.

1990: Wins first European Cup Winners' Cup title as Sampdoria beat Anderlecht 2-0 in the final.

1991: Helps Sampdoria win Italian title for first time in club's history, scoring 12 goals.

1997: Joins Lazio.

1999: Gains second Cup Winners' Cup title after a 2-1 win over Real Mallorca.

2000: Announces end of a playing career which saw him represent Italy 36 times. Joins Lazio's coaching staff as Sven-Goran Eriksson's number two.

2001: January - Eriksson resigns and Mancini announces he will follow the coach out of the Stadio Olimpico. Makes playing comeback with Leicester, making five appearances for club.

March 7 - Returns to coaching, taking charge of Fiorentina.

June 13 - Earns first coaching honour as Fiorentina beat Parma in Coppa Italia final.

2002: January 11 - Resigns as Fiorentina coach with club second-bottom of Serie A.

May 9 - Lazio part with Alberto Zaccheroni and appoint Mancini as new coach.

2003: June - Lazio finish fourth in Serie A and qualify for the Champions League.

2004: May - Wins Coppa Italia, defeating Juventus 4-2.

July 7 - Takes over as coach of Inter Milan following resignation of Alberto Zaccheroni in June.

2005: Leads Inter to Coppa Italia and Italian Supercup glory.

2006: Again leads Inter to Coppa Italia and Italian Supercup triumphs. Inter also awarded Serie A title after Juventus and AC Milan are docked points due to match-fixing scandal.

2007: Guides Inter to successful defence of Serie A title.

2008: Announces plans to leave Inter but reverses his decision. Steers club to third straight Serie A title but is sacked the same month.

2009: Manchester City confirm the sacking of manager Mark Hughes, and announce the appointment of Mancini as his replacement.

2011: May - After bringing in the likes of David Silva and Yaya Toure in a pre-season spending spree, City finish third in the Premier League, securing qualification to the Champions League for the first time.

May 14 - Leads City to their first major silverware in 35 years as Yaya Toure's goal secures a 1-0 victory over Stoke in the FA Cup final.

2012: May - City clinch their first league title in 44 years as Sergio Aguero's dramatic late winner against QPR sees Mancini's men pip Manchester United to top spot on goal difference.

July 9 - Agrees a new five-year contract at City, supposedly keeping him at the club until 2017.

December 4 - Champions League campaign ends without a single win in Group D - with the bottom placing meaning they miss out on Europa League action.

2013: April 22 - Manchester United regain their Premier League title from City.

May 11 - Loses FA Cup final 1-0 to Wigan.

May 13 - Sacked as City manager.

Sept 30- Signed a three-year contract with Turkish club Galatasaray taking over from Fatih Terim who left to coach Turkey

2014: May 7 - Galatasaray won Turkish Cup final

June 11: Left Galatasaray by mutual consent.

Nov 14: Returns for a second spell to Inter Milan

2016: Aug 8 - Left Inter by mutual consent

2017: June 1 - Agrees a three-year deal at Russian club Zenit Saint Petersburg

2018: May 13 - Zenit finish fifth in the Russian Premier League, failing to qualify for the Champions League but getting a place in the Europa League. Mancini terminates his contract by mutual consent to take over as coach of four-time world champions Italy. 

May 14: Appointed Italy head coach in place of Gian Piero Ventura who was sacked in November 2017 after the Azzurri failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in 1958

Read more on:    italy  |  roberto mancini  |  soccer
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