Mancini remains as Italy coach

ROBERTO Mancini has hinted that he will remain as Italy coach even though the Azzurri failed to qualify for the World Cup for the second time in a row. Mancini will continue to make improvements, especially coaching young players.

The Euro 2020 champions were shocked by defeat to North Macedonia in the semifinals of the Qatar 2022 World Cup qualifying playoffs, which saw them fail to qualify for the second time.

The failure sparked talk that Mancini would step down after the worst possible defeat for Italy.

Read also: Italy did not qualify for the World Cup, Berardi apologizes

“I have spoken with the president (Italian Football Federation) (Gabriele Gravina) in the last few days. Then we will take our time to talk about what can be improved for the future. That’s all,” said Mancini.

“We will include young players in the Italian national team, in the hope that they will also have the opportunity to appear at their clubs. We start from here, then we will see what to do in a more general context,” he continued.

When asked what would drive him to stay on as Italy coach, Mancini smiled and showed his enthusiasm for managing a team he believes will be competitors in Qatar if they qualify.

“I’m still young, my goal is to win the European Championship and the World Cup, and for the World Cup we need to wait a little bit,” he said.

“I love my job, I think I can still have fun and do something special with the boys,” he continued.

Names such as Italy captain who led the Azzurri to win the 2006 World Cup Fabio Cannavaro and Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti are said to be Mancini’s replacement.

Mancini, who has been Italy coach since May 2018 after Italy failed to reach the World Cup that year, has a contract that runs until 2026.

After the defeat to North Macedonia, team captains Giorgio Chiellini and Gravina said they wanted Mancini to remain Italy coach. (AFP/OL-1)