AC Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri has jumped before he was pushed, announcing that he will step down as AC Milan at the end of the season.
The pressure has been building on the Milan coach, who led the Rossoneri to the Serie A title in 2011. But this year has been a disaster in the red side of Milan, with Allegri’s side currently 13th in the Serie A table, 17 points outside the Champions League places and 27 behind league leaders Juventus.
Allegri has preempted any notion that he will be fired by saying that his time as Milan boss is coming to an end.
“I don’t know who will be the new coach, it’s not my problem,” he told Gazzetta. “Certainly this is my last Christmas as a Milanista, but I’ve got to eat my panettone once again and, in truth, I never doubted that I would.”
Asked what team he will leave behind, he added:
“A good team who have endeared themselves to the fans for their way of being. A side who, with a few adjustments here and there, have a future.”
Allegri expanded his comments in an interview with Sky Sport Italia saying:
“The last four months in Serie A were disastrous.”
“In 2014 we are focusing on a great Champions League campaign. I am confident, even though Sulley Muntari and Riccardo Montolivo will be suspended for the first leg against Atletico Madrid.
“Plus there is the Coppa Italia to play for and in the League third place is a long way off, but we’ll do everything possible.”
Clarence Seedorf is heavily tipped to be Allegri’s successor, despite having no management experience.
“I don’t know who will be the next Milan Coach and it’s not my problem. I can be certain this is my last Christmas at Milan, but I got there despite many people doubting I’d manage that.
“Seedorf gave a great deal in his penultimate season at Milan. He’s a great player, but I’d have loved to work with him when he was 28 rather than 35.”
It will be interesting to see who Milan go for in the summer. Will it be the untested Seedorf or will Milan owner Silvio Berluscon go for someone like current Italy national team coach Cesare Prandelli, who will be stepping down after this summer’s World Cup.