MOSCOW, June 1. /TASS/. Italian specialist Roberto Mancini is a top-class professional who was considered as a candidate for the post of the Russian national team’s head coach, Deputy Prime Minister and President of Russia’s Football Union Vitaly Mutko said on Thursday.
52-year-old Mancini was appointed on Thursday as the head coach of the football club Zenit St. Petersburg. The Italian specialist signed a three-year contract with an option of its extension for a further two years.
"He is a top coach, I know. We wanted to invite him to the national squad. We’ll see whether he will succeed or not. It is important for a coach to be in ‘his’ club," Mutko said.
The FC Zenit Board of Directors decided on May 28 to sever a contract with Romanian specialist Mircea Lucescu who had been Zenit’s head coach from May 2016.
Mancini previously coached Italy’s FC Inter Milan in 2004-2008 and in 2014-2016. He also worked in the Italian football clubs Lazio and Fiorentina, the UK-based Manchester City and the Turkish Galatasaray. As a coach, he won three Italian championships, four Italian Cups, one Italian Super Cup, one UK championship, a UK Cup and a UK Super Cup and a Turkish Cup.