Fabio Pecchia has done a remarkable job since parting company with Rafa Benitez.

The Newcastle boss had been with his assistant at Napoli, Real Madrid and Newcastle United, but this summer Pecchia had an opportunity he couldn’t turn down.

Leaving with Rafa’s full blessing, Fabio Pecchia joined Hellas Verona.

The Italian club were in disarray, last season they didn’t win a Serie A match until February this year, their 23rd match of a 38 game season – not surprisingly they finished rock bottom of the table and were relegated.

Rafa Benitez’ former assistant faced a huge task but just like his old boss, he has managed to turn his Italian club around.

Rafa sits top in England’s second tier and his Newcastle team are top scorers in the Championship.

In Italy’s Serie B it is the same story, Hellas Verona sit two points clear at the top of the table and Fabio Pecchia’s team have scored nine goals more than the next highest club total.

In similar vein…Hearts are currently 10 points behind Celtic and that looks a tough ask – but for Ian Cathro who departed this week, there appears to be a three-way fight for runners-up in the Scottish Premier, as Rangers, Aberdeen and Hearts are separated by only two points.

Cathro faces an interesting start to his managerial/head coach career, first game is a visit to Ibrox on Saturday and a Hearts win would take them above Rangers.

Rafa Benitez official statement when Fabio Pecchia left Newcastle – 1 June 2016:

“Today I would like to congratulate Fabio Pecchia who, until now, has been my ‘assistant ‘ in my recent managerial appointments at SSC Napoli, Real Madrid CF and more recently – Newcastle United FC.

“Fabio Pecchia has just accepted an offer from Hellas Verona and leaves us to return to Italy. To the football league we both fondly know as ‘Calcio’, he returns to head up an interesting and exciting project in Hellas Verona.

“For this reason, I’d like to highlight two points:

“First, I am sad to see him depart as he has been an excellent professional from the first day and until the last in the years we have worked together.

“Second and most importantly, I am pleased because he been considered for this new position, he leaves to face these new and exciting challenges, both personally and professionally. I wish you all the best, good luck and I can only say thank you for everything, Fabio.

“In my opinion, Hellas Verona are right in choosing Fabio and Filippo Fusco, another person close to me. Filippo is an individual who is professional, diligent, capable and equally qualified as Fabio is. This is another reason to be pleased for Fabio’s departure and subsequent journey.

“I wish them both the best of the luck, strength and encouragement for their new and future endeavours.”

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