Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Agnelli name returns to Juve

Andrea Agnelli, nephew of the late former Juventus owner Gianni Agnelli, is to become club President, restoring the famous name to the hierarchy of the faltering giants.

Andrea Agnelli & John ElkannThe Agnelli name has been absent from Juve's boardroom since Gianni's death in 2003 and Italy's best supported club have suffered scandal and disappointing results ever since.

"Andrea is not only a representative of our family but a person that loves Juventus in a genuine way," John Elkann, grandson of Gianni and President of Exor - the holding company which controls FIAT and Juve, said.

The 34-year-old Agnelli, who will follow in the footsteps of his father Umberto, takes up the post at the end of the season with the much-criticised Jean Claude Blanc, who was only appointed in October to succeed Giovanni Cobolli Gigli, reverting to his position as chief executive.

The President's role is limited but Juve fans, who have had to deal with demotion for their part in the Calciopoli scandal in 2006 and a poor campaign this term, will be glad of a link to a glorious past which included two European Cups under Gianni's rule.

Other changes are expected at Juve, who are sixth in Serie A, but the club have refused to confirm or deny interest in Liverpool coach Rafael Benitez after fevered media speculation.

Alberto Zaccheroni, who took over from the sacked Ciro Ferrara in January, has not improved the side's form and there has been no sign his contract will be extended beyond June.

Media reports have also said former midfielder Pavel Nedved, who retired at the end of last season and has been sorely missed on the field, will soon be appointed as youth team coach.

Highly-regarded Sampdoria sporting director Beppe Marotta has also been linked with Juve as the club try to move on.

However, reminders of their demotion are never far away.

On Wednesday the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) announced after a review that the 2006 ban on former Juve general manager Luciano Moggi, the chief accused in the Calciopoli scandal, still applied to all roles in Italian football.

Moggi is facing a criminal trial in Naples over the affair.

Source: Reuters

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