It’s official: Gennaro Gattuso is OM’s new coach. Accompanied by his staff, the former Italian player arrived at La Commanderie on Wednesday September 27 to sign his contract, and led his very first training session in the process. Introduction.
Can the inimitable Gennaro Gattuso pull OM out of its crisis? Following the resignation of Marcelino, who had gone unbeaten with the club since the league resumed, the club owned by Franck McCourt and presided over by Pablo Longoria has set its sights on a former player known for his strong temperament on the pitch. An understandable gamble, and even a necessary one, given the club’s reputation.
A former holding midfielder for the Squadra Azzura and the legendary AC Milan, Gattuso, like many soccer legends at the end of their careers, opted fairly quickly for a coaching career. A logical conversion, even if we know that many talented former players do not necessarily have the qualities required for a great coaching career. Ahead of OM’s trip to Monaco this Saturday for Ligue 1 matchday 7, here are a few facts and figures about the man nicknamed Ringhio (“grunt” in French).
A first trophy with Napoli
After 13 seasons with the Rossoneri, Gattuso’s next port of call was Swiss top-flight club FC Sion. One goal and 32 games later, the sentinel retired and immediately started on the Swiss club’s bench. After a spell in Greece, Gattuso returned to Italian football, first in Serie C, then in Serie B with Pisa, and finally with his beloved AC Milan. Despite two good seasons with AC Milan (41 wins – 20 defeats – 22 draws), the tactician failed to win a first title. It was in 2019 that the former world champion with Italy (in 2006) won his first title as a coach: the Italian Cup at the helm of another legendary club, SSC Napoli. After a brief spell with Fiorentina, which he left a few days later due to disagreements with his managers, Gattuso moved on to the Spanish league with FC Valencia. After a series of poor results, Gattuso left the club at the beginning of 2023. Despite a rather mixed record as a coach, with just one title to his name, the Italian is a man of character, resolutely made to be at the helm of a team like Olympique de Marseille.
Gattuso’s first strong message
The first Italian coach to sit on the Olympic bench since Giuseppe Zilizzi in 1958, Gennaro Gattuso already seems to have made a strong impression. During his first training session with his new squad – which he already knows inside out – the new Marseille coach addressed his new group. As reported by Fabrice Hawkins, journalist for RMC Sport and BFM TV, Gattuso explained that he was “not interested in what his players do away from home”, but that he expected them to be “ready to die on the pitch”.
To follow Gennaro Gattuso’s debut in charge of Olympique de Marseille, tune in to Canal+ Sport 360 this Saturday September 30 for the Ligue 1 clash with AS Monaco.