Friday 23 August 2019

Italy sack manager Giampiero Ventura after Azzurri fail to qualify for World Cup

Giampiero Ventura
Giampiero Ventura

Samuel Lovett

The Italian FA have sacked Giampiero Ventura as the national manager after his side failed to qualify for next summer’s World Cup.

The Azzurri were beaten to the penultimate spot at Russia 2018 by Sweden after losing 1-0 on aggregate to their Scandinavian opponents.

Trailing 1-0 to a Jakob Johansson goal scored in Friday's first leg in Stockholm, the Italians failed to break the deadlock at a sold-out San Siro.

This is the first time since 1958 that Italy have failed to qualify for the World Cup finals.

And in the wake of Monday’s 0-0 draw in Milan, Ventura has been removed from his position as manager.

The Italian media has largely placed the blame for a poor qualifying campaign and dismal play-off attempt at the door of head coach Ventura, who was under contract until 2020.

Writing in the wake of Italy’s World Cup upset, La Gazzetta wrote "Ventura, now it's over" while identifying Carlo Ancelotti as his potential successor.

The former Chelsea boss is out of work after leaving Bayern Munich earlier this year.

"Whoever comes in will have to rebuild from rubble and work towards Euro 2020," read the article.

"The most fancied name is Ancelotti but there is the possibility (Chelsea boss Antonio) Conte will return, as he is a bit tired of England.

"Very welcome alternatives would be (Roberto) Mancini and (Massimiliano) Allegri, if they can leave their respective roles at Zenit St Petersburg and Juventus."

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