The stars aligned perfectly for the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) as they were able to name former Juventus boss Antonio Conte as the new head coach of the Italian national team. Conte replaces Cesare Prandelli who resigned at the end of the World Cup finals in Brazil after seeing his Azzurri side fail to progress from a group which also contained England, Uruguay and Costa Rica.
An FIGC statement read:
“President (Carlo) Tavecchio and Antonio Conte spoke directly by phone this morning to define the final aspects of the collaboration that will bind Antonio Conte to the FIGC until 31 July 2016.
“The new coach shared in the president Tavecchio’s vision to revitalise the national team and the project of training of new Azzurri players, and has a strong commitment towards the technical sector as coordinator of the youth teams.”
“The contract between the FIGC and Antonio Conte provides compensation in line with the cost of the previous management, with a bonus for qualifying for Euro 2016, an added bonus in case of improvement of at least five places in the FIFA rankings, and a third bonus in case of participation at the Euro 2016 finals.”
The 45-year-old Conte is the best young manager in Italy, and he led Juventus to three consecutive Serie A titles and once into the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League. Conte’s appointment has already been given a stamp of approval by Italy legends Dino Zoff and Paolo Maldini, who have both hailed the new man as “perfect for La Nazionale.”