Will they Return???

Many ex-players move into management positions, they head back to clubs where they are legends, some succeed but the majority fail and end up damaging their reputations.                                                                                                                                                      
Last week saw Paolo di Canio named as the Swindon Town manager, many Laziale are unlikely to have even heard of the Robins – A side that holds the record for the most goals conceded in top flight football when they shipped 100 in just one season in the 1993/94 season.                                                                                                                                                            
Paolo has stated that his reason for joining the Wiltshere club is due to their hunger to succeed and ambition. Another factor that may have helped him make his decision was that back in 1969, just a year after ‘Il Padrino’ was born, Swindon took on Lazio’s bitter rivals Roma in the now distinct Anglo-Italian Cup and destroyed them 5-2 thanks to an Arthur Horsfield hat-trick.                                                                                                                                                
There is no doubt that Paolo would want to return to Rome one day and manage Lazio, admittedly it is unlikely to happy anytime soon but if he impresses in England maybe he will get the chance.                                                                                                        
There are various ex-Lazio players who became legends on the pitch as they played with their hearts and were worshipped whilst they wore the Biancocelesti shirt … but will they ever return to manage the club?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              
Siniša Mihajlović, represented Lazio for six years and was a key member of the ‘Dream Team’ in 1999/2000 that completed the double, he featured in 126 league games for the club and scored 20 goals. The Serbian started his career in a more attacking position before playing at the back, on the field he will be remembered for being one of the best free kick takers of all time and even holds the record for scoring 38 top flight free-kicks in Italy.                                                                                                                                                                                             
Sadly, he left Lazio under a cloud when his close friend Roberto Mancini left for Inter, the Serbian followed and since then when he has come up against the club he has received abuse from the Ultras. Despite this, Siniša still holds a candle for the club and has admitted that he would like to return to coach the club.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
His career in management has been mixed, after playing for Inter he joined Roberto’s coaching staff before taking over at Bologna. A move that quickly turned sour as was sacked after just 22 games, then he took over struggling Catania where he managed to get them to finish 13th in Serie A. The Serbs next move was to join Fiorentina who had seen Cesere Prandelli depart for the national job – in his first season he finished a respectable 9th and could be one to watch.                                                                                                                                            
Catania’s current boss is Diego Simeone, the Argentine was a rock at the heart of the Lazio midfield during the golden years. He got his managerial career off to an excellent start when he led Estudiantes de La Plata to their first league title in 23 years, Diego also won the Primera Division in his home country with River Plate before joining San Lorenzo, but after a poor season he quit and found his way back to Italy in January 2011 when to took charge of Catania.                                                                                                                                                               
Like his ex-team mate, Diego also guided the Sicilians to safety after taking over when they were fighting for their safety, as the season came to an end they enjoyed an impressive 2-1 win over Roma which would have given the Argentinean personal satisfaction as it meant his side stayed up as well as ending Roma’s hopes of Champions League qualification.                                                                                                                                                             
If he continues to impress with Catania there is no reason that Diego will not end up back at the club where he made 90 league appearances and enjoyed winning the league and cup double.                                                                                                                
Another star from those happy times was Pavel Nedved, the Czech player was incredible the centre of the park – he scored 33 times in 138 league games and was the last ever scorer in the Cup Winners’ Cup after scoring the winner against RCD Mallorca in 1999. Pavel moved to Juventus for a mammoth €41 million in 2001 after Zinedine Zidane headed to Real Madrid, during which time he won two league titles.
The Czech star showed his loyalty when Juve were demoted to Serie B for financial irregularities and he opted to stay and help the Turin side get back to the top flight whilst others jumped ship and headed for pastures new.                                                                                                                                                                                                                              
Since retiring from playing, Pavel has taken up a role with the Juventus board where he is a director, whilst there is no sign that he will make a move into the day-to-day world of management, I for one would love to see him lead the team out as head coach.            


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