Walter Mazzarri


Walter Mazzarri (Italian pronunciation: [ˈvalter madˈdzarri]; born 1 October 1961) is an Italian former footballer and head coach.

Walter Mazzarri
Mazzarri in 2012
Personal information
Full name Walter Mazzarri[1]
Date of birth (1961-10-01) 1 October 1961 (age 59)[2]
Place of birth San Vincenzo, Italy[2]
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)[2]
Position(s) Midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1981–1982 Pescara 26 (4)
1982 Cagliari 4 (0)
1982–1983 Reggiana 12 (1)
1983 Fiorentina 0 (0)
1983–1988 Empoli 91 (4)
1988–1989 Licata 8 (0)
1989–1990 Modena 21 (0)
1990–1991 Nola 30 (3)
1991–1992 Viareggio 11 (0)
1992–1994 Acireale 32 (1)
1994–1995 Torres 9 (0)
Total 244 (13)
Teams managed
2001–2002 Acireale
2002–2003 Pistoiese
2003–2004 Livorno
2004–2007 Reggina
2007–2009 Sampdoria
2009–2013 Napoli
2013–2014 Internazionale
2016–2017 Watford
2018–2020 Torino
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

After coaching several smaller Italian sides, Mazzarri took up a managerial position with Sampdoria in 2007; with the help of the attacking partnership of Antonio Cassano and Giampaolo Pazzini, he led the team to qualify for the UEFA Cup in his first season, and subsequently reached the Coppa Italia final the next year. In 2009, he joined Napoli, where he implemented a 3–4–3 formation with which he later became associated. With the attacking trio of Ezequiel Lavezzi, Edinson Cavani and Marek Hamšík, nicknamed I tre tenori (Italian for The three tenors), he helped the team qualify for the UEFA Champions League for the first time in the club's history in 2011, and won the Coppa Italia the following season, the club's first trophy in over 20 years. In his final season with the team, he managed a second-place finish in Serie A, the club's best league finish in over 20 years.

In 2013, he moved to Internazionale, but was later sacked halfway through his second season with the club. He later managed Torino in Serie A, and had one year in charge of Watford in England's Premier League in 2016–17.

Funnily enough, during his Italian career, Mazzarri has become known for the excuses he used to make during his post-match interviews, usually to justify poor performances.[3][4]

Playing career


Mazzarri, a midfielder and a product of Fiorentina's youth system, made his professional debut in 1981 for Pescara of Serie B, and played a short Serie A stint in Cagliari the following season, before being sold to Reggiana. He had his longest period at Empoli, who won promotion to Serie A for the first time during his time with the Tuscan side. After several spells with mostly minor teams, including a two-year stint with Acireale where he was part of the team who won a historic first promotion to Serie B, and then playing in the Italian second tier in 1993–94, Mazzarri ended his playing career in 1995 with Sassari Torres.

Managerial career


Early years

Mazzarri started his coaching career as Renzo Ulivieri's assistant at Napoli in 1998. His first spell in charge came in 2001–02 for Sicilian Serie C2 team Acireale, where he had been a player from 1992 to 1994. Subsequently, he returned to his native Tuscany to coach Pistoiese of Serie C1 in 2002–03 and Livorno of Serie B in 2003–04, bringing the amaranto led by Cristiano Lucarelli back to Serie A. He was coach of Reggina from 2004 to 2007, leading the Calabrian side to Serie A survival in three consecutive seasons, the last obtained on the final day of the season despite an 11-point deduction. In May 2007, Mazzarri was made an honorary citizen of Reggio Calabria, after helping the club avoid relegation during the 2006–07 Serie A season.[5]

Sampdoria

On 31 May 2007 he was announced as new Sampdoria coach.[6] He served as Sampdoria boss for two seasons, overseeing a considerable improvement in results, thanks to the likes of the attacking duo of Antonio Cassano, who publicly praised Mazzarri's coaching abilities, and Giampaolo Pazzini. Sampdoria's 2007–08 campaign ended in an impressive sixth place, which ensured qualification for the UEFA Cup. Mazzarri's fortunes declined slightly in 2008–09, as the blucerchiati ended their campaign in 13th place; despite this, he managed to guide his team into the Coppa Italia Final, notably defeating champions Inter 3–1 on aggregate in the semi-finals, before losing on penalties to Lazio in the final. Mazzarri left Sampdoria by mutual consent at the end of the 2008–09 season.

Napoli

On 6 October 2009 he was appointed manager of Napoli, replacing Roberto Donadoni.[7] He finished his debut season in sixth place in Serie A, and was handed a new three-year contract at the end of the campaign.[8]

In 2010–11, Mazzarri's Napoli finished third in the league and qualified directly for the group phase of the 2011–12 UEFA Champions League – their first time in Europe's premier competition in 21 years.[9] His team were known for an attacking 3–4–3 formation with a frontline of Ezequiel Lavezzi, Marek Hamšík and Edinson Cavani.[10] They finished second in their Champions League group, behind Bayern Munich but ahead of Manchester City and Villareal, to meet Chelsea in the last 16. Napoli won 3–1 at home in the first leg; they were subsequently beaten 4–1 at Stamford Bridge after extra time, being eliminated by the eventual champions.[11]

Napoli won the 2012 Coppa Italia Final over undefeated league champions Juventus on 20 May; this was Juventus's only loss of the season, and Napoli's first title in over 20 years.[12] On 11 August that year, the club suffered a controversial 4–2 extra-time defeat to Juventus in the 2012 Supercoppa Italiana, which saw two Napoli players sent off as well as Mazzarri.[13] He left the Azzurri on 19 May 2013, after leading them to a 2nd-place finish and a spot in the Champions League at the end of the 2012–13 Serie A season; this was the club's best league finish in over 20 years.[14]

Inter

Mazzarri as manager of Inter in September 2014

Mazzarri was officially appointed as the Inter manager on 24 May 2013,[15] after Andrea Stramaccioni was dismissed for a poor performance in the 2012–13 season. On 2 July 2014, he signed a one-year extension to tie him to the team until 30 June 2016.[16]

He was sacked by Inter after a series of disappointing results on 14 November 2014, leaving the club in ninth place.[17][18][19] He parted with the club before the 12th matchday, while they were five points below their season objective of the third position.[20]

Watford

On 21 May 2016, Watford confirmed they had reached an agreement with Mazzarri to become Head Coach from 1 July 2016 on a three-year contract.[21] He joined a club owned by his compatriot Giampaolo Pozzo, and worked without being able to speak English.[22]

Mazzarri secured Watford's Premier League status that season, finishing one place above relegation in 17th, a four-place dip on their previous campaign.[22] It was announced on 17 May 2017 that his contract would be terminated at the end of his first season at the club.[23]

Torino

On 4 January 2018, Mazzarri was appointed manager of Torino, replacing Siniša Mihajlović.[24] With a 7th-place finish in 2018–19 he led the Granata to the UEFA Europa League, where they were eliminated in the play-off round by Wolverhampton Wanderers.[25]

On 4 February 2020, Mazzarri was dismissed following back-to-back 7–0 and 4–0 defeats to Atalanta and Lecce, respectively.[26][27]

Managerial statistics


As of match played 2 February 2020[28]
Managerial record by team and tenure
Team Nat From To Record
G W D L GF GA GD Win %
Acireale 17 September 2001 4 June 2002 31 10 10 11 32 31 +1 032.26
Pistoiese 4 June 2002 8 June 2003 39 12 11 16 35 45 −10 030.77
Livorno 8 June 2003 15 June 2004 47 20 20 7 76 46 +30 042.55
Reggina 15 June 2004 28 May 2007 123 37 39 47 140 173 −33 030.08
Sampdoria 31 May 2007 1 June 2009 99 38 29 32 134 117 +17 038.38
Napoli 6 October 2009 20 May 2013 182 89 50 43 292 203 +89 048.90
Internazionale 24 May 2013 14 November 2014 58 25 21 12 99 57 +42 043.10
Watford 1 July 2016 21 May 2017 41 12 7 22 43 71 −28 029.27
Torino 4 January 2018 4 February 2020 90 37 25 28 132 109 +23 041.11
Total 710 280 212 218 983 852 +131 039.44

Honours


Manager

Sampdoria[29]
Napoli[29]
Individual

References


  1. "Comunicato Ufficiale N. 74" [Official Press Release No. 74] (PDF). Lega Serie A. 31 October 2011. p. 5. Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  2. "Mazzarri: Walter Mazzarri: Manager". BDFutbol. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  3. "Le scuse di Mazzarri" (in Italian).
  4. "Fenomenologia delle scuse di Walter Mazzarri" (in Italian).
  5. "Mazzarri-Samp, è fatta" (in Italian). La Repubblica. 29 May 2007. Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  6. "Mazzarri named Samp boss". Football Italia. 31 May 2007. Archived from the original on 2 June 2007. Retrieved 31 May 2007.
  7. "È Walter Mazzarri il nuovo allenatore" (in Italian). SSC Napoli. 6 October 2009. Retrieved 6 October 2009.
  8. "Mazzarri rinnova col Napoli, accordo fino al 2013" [Mazzarri renews with Napoli, agreement until 2013] (in Italian). Sky Sport. 22 May 2013. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  9. "EuroNapoli, è di nuovo Champions 21 anni dopo Maradona" [EuroNapoli, in the Champions League again 21 years after Maradona] (in Italian). Sky Sport. 15 May 2011. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  10. Dubey, Sarthak (21 February 2012). "Walter Mazzarri's 3-4-3 vs AVB's 4-3-3: Three key battles that may decide the Napoli-Chelsea result". Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  11. Taylor, Daniel (14 March 2012). "Branislav Ivanovic seals dramatic Chelsea win over Napoli". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  12. Paolo Bandini (21 May 2012). "Napoli ruin Del Piero's final farewell with Coppa Italia win over Juventus". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 March 2016.
  13. "Juventus 4-2 Napoli". ESPN. 14 August 2012. Retrieved 23 August 2012.
  14. "Mazzarri quits as Napoli coach". ESPN FC. Associated Press. 19 May 2013. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  15. "FC Internazionale club statement". 24 May 2013. Retrieved 25 May 2013.
  16. "Inter firm up Mazzarri commitment". UEFA. 2 July 2014. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  17. "FC INTERNAZIONALE CLUB STATEMENT". FC Internazionale Milano. 14 November 2014. Retrieved 14 November 2014.
  18. "Internazionale sack head coach Walter Mazzarri after 17 months in charge". The Guardian. 14 November 2014. Retrieved 14 November 2014.
  19. "Inter Milan: Head coach Walter Mazzarri sacked". BBC Sport. 14 November 2014. Retrieved 14 November 2014.
  20. "Serie A TIM - Spieltag / Tabelle". 9 September 2015. Retrieved 9 September 2015.
  21. "OFFICIAL: Walter Mazzarri Appointed Head Coach At Watford". Watford F.C. 21 May 2016. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  22. "Watford 2016/17 Premier League season review". Sky Sports. 21 May 2017. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  23. "Statement: Walter Mazzarri". Watford F.C. 17 May 2016. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
  24. "Official: Torino appoint Mazzarri". Football Italia. 4 January 2018.
  25. Begley, Emlyn (29 August 2019). "Wolverhampton Wanderers 21 Torino". BBC Sport. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  26. "UFFICIALE: Torino, Moreno Longo nuovo allenatore granata". torinofc.it. 4 February 2020. Retrieved 4 February 2020.
  27. "Official: Longo in for Mazzarri at Torino". Football Italia. 4 February 2020.
  28. "Walter Mazzarri career sheet". footballdatabase. footballdatabase. Retrieved 18 January 2021.
  29. "W. Mazzarri". Soccerway. Retrieved 31 March 2016.
  30. "Mazzarri vince il Premio Bearzot" (in Italian). sport.libero.it. 28 March 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2016.