Ventura Sacked after World Cup Failure

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28 Nov
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Posted by isport at 15:04

The head coach of the Italian football team Gianpiero Ventura has left following the failure of the team to make the World Cup for the first time in 60 years. The coach was widely criticized for his team selection and the tactics he employed throughout the qualification phase.

The whole country has been thrown into mourning following the miss. The outrage means any one that played a major part in the qualification process would likely get the hammer. The 69-year old is one of the casualties as the European soccer giant would miss the prestigious tournament for the first time since 1958.

There is reportedly an inquest into the cause of the failure to qualify, with some labelling it ’the apocalypse.’ The four-time world champions did not mention specifically if Ventura was sacked or if he resigned. The coach initially wanted to meet with the Italian Football Federation boss before deciding on the next move but the public outrage meant it was only a matter of time. The president of the Italian Football Federation Carlo Tavecchio has refused to hand in his resignation, drawing public condemnation. The building pressure might eventually get to him though.

In the team, there has been a spate of retirements. The skipper Gianluigi Buffon was in tears as the team lost 1-0 aggregate against Sweden. He apologized and then retired on that note. Daniele de Rossi also retired, and other aging players are expected to follow suit.

The media is naming veteran manager Carlo Ancelotti as the prime candidate to help rebuild the team. Antonio Conte was earlier linked as he remains unstable in England (in spite of the pundit's premier league preview making Chelsea the early favourites to hold on to their title, but he would likely not exit The Blues now so Ancelotti gained prominence.

Italy's woes were in part caused by Spain, who topped the group they were both in, and forced Italy into the playoffs, but they have their own issues when it coems to scoring goals. The head coach of the Spain national Football Team, Julen Lopetegui, reckons he is not short of options as far as his attack is concerned despite not picking Diego Costa for the next couple of games.

Costa has not played competitive Football for the last 6 months. The last time he was seen on the pitch in an official game was in the previous season where he featured for Chelsea in the title round of the FA Cup. He was thereafter bought by Atletico Madrid in the summer, but he is yet to make his debut for them because they are serving a transfer ban imposed on them.

Lopetegui could still have picked Costa - trusting his training and his previous reputation - but the head coach decided to be pragmatic and went for the players who have been active in club Football rather than Costa and is pretty confident about them doing the job. This hasn’t come as a surprise as Lopetegui had made it clear in September itself that he wasn’t going to give Costa another international game until he starts playing club Football again and he had conveyed that to the player himself.

The ban that is imposed on Atletico Madrid will continue for another few weeks which means that it’s only at some point in January that Costa will be able to make a comeback in the game.

Lopetegui stressed that he has kept Costa in the frame for the World Cup and he may make the Spain squad for the showpiece competition once he convinces him with his form and rhythm after his comeback.