Monday, 2 August 2010

Baggio to become technical director

Italy legend Roberto Baggio is on the verge of sealing a return to football after agreeing to be part of the staff of the national set-up.

Baggio, who retired from playing in 2004, held a two-hour discussion with Italian Football Federation (FIGC) President Giancarlo Abete and the Italian Coaches' Association (AIAC) President Renzo Ulivieri and is now expected to officially be confirmed as the head of the Technical Sector on Wednesday.

"I have given my assent," the 43-year-old told reporters at FIGC headquarters in Rome. "On my part there's the maximum willingness to hold the role of President of the Technical Sector at Coverciano.

"Now, however, I have to wait for the Federal Council on Wednesday.

"It will be a tough challenge but hopefully fun. My role will cover many areas, but first I will take time to understand many things."

Baggio scored 27 goals in 56 appearances for Italy, and is the only Azzurri player ever to score in three FIFA World Cups.

He led his country to the World Cup final in 1994, scoring five goals in the knockout stages, but infamously missed the final spot-kick in the penalty shootout against Brazil.

The playmaker - affectionately known as Il Divin Codino (the Divine Ponytail) - enjoyed a glittering 22-year career with a number of clubs including Brescia, Fiorentina, Juventus and both Milan teams.

Italy's recent World Cup flop in South Africa has prompted the FIGC to choose the inspirational Baggio to head its technical division despite his lack of coaching experience.

The role, which has been held by former Italy coach Azeglio Vicini, includes advising coaches and nurturing young Italian talent.

New Italy boss Cesare Prandelli will soon name his first squad for next week's friendly with the Ivory Coast in London but has limited youngsters to pick from, an issue Baggio will be forced to address.

Gianni Rivera and Arrigo Sacchi are also set to join the FIGC in official capacities as the Federation looks to revitalise the youth system in the peninsula.

Source: Reuters

1 comment:

  1. Good to see Baggio back in football... great choice, he will be an awesome mentor for young Italians... truely inspirational!