Moscow, May 13 (IANS) Italian coach Roberto Mancini on Sunday reached an agreement to leave Zenit Saint Petersburg and make himself available for a potential move to become head coach of the Italian national football team.
The departure means Mancini, who was appointed Zenit’s head coach this season, becomes the top contender to coach Italy, which is rebuilding after failing to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, reports Efe.
“Zenit and Mancini have reached an agreement to mutually part ways. Today’s game will be his last match at Zenit,” the club tweeted.
Mancini, who has reportedly been engaging in talks with Italy to take the helm of the first team, is to leave Zenit after their final league game in the 2017/2018 season against Khabarovsk.
Zenit were eliminated from the Russian Cup as well as the Europa League and sits in the fifth spot in the Russian league table, missing out on next season’s UEFA Champions League as well.
The club’s failures this season seem to have had little effect on Mancini’s odds of taking the Italian job, as he previously steered Manchester City and Inter Milan to win the UEFA Champions League title.
Four-time World Cup winners Italy missed out on this summer’s World Cup after losing to Sweden in the play-offs.