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Rafa Benitez former assistant clinches Serie A place by smallest of margins

4 years ago

Rather than staying with Rafa Benitez and Newcastle United, Fabio Pecchia instead chose to step into the world of football management.

Since leaving in June, Fabio Pecchia has done a remarkable job since parting company with Rafa and heading off to Hellas Verona.

The Newcastle boss had been with his assistant at Napoli, Real Madrid and Newcastle United,  Pecchia joined an Italian club in disarray.

Last season (2015/16) Hellas Verona didn’t win a Serie A match until February 2016, 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.

Thursday (last) night saw the second promotion place to Serie A be decided, with it falling between Hellas Verona and Fromisone.

SPAL finished as Champions of Serie B with 78 points and Hellas & Frosinone ended up joint second on 74 points, however goal difference just took Rafa’s former assistant over the line.

Thursday night saw Fromisone win 2-1 over Pro Vercelli, with Hellas Verona needing a point then for promotion – a nervy 0-0 draw at Cesena doing the job.

After the promotion was confirmed, the club’s President said he was confident they would be able to keep hold of Rafa Benitez’ former assistant as they move back to the Italian top tier.

Hellas Verona President Maurizio Setti:

“Pecchia is staying, we’ll move forward with him.

“I never had any doubts he could do it – even when it looked like things weren’t going well for us.”

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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