- POSTED: 14 Jan 2014 03:16
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Struggling Serie A giants AC Milan are attempting to lure Dutchman Clarence Seedorf to the club as a replacement for Massimiliano Allegri, who was sacked as coach on Monday following a 4-3 defeat to Sassuolo, say reports.
MILAN: Struggling Serie A giants AC Milan are attempting to lure Dutchman Clarence Seedorf to the club as a replacement for Massimiliano Allegri, who was sacked as coach on Monday following a 4-3 defeat to Sassuolo, say reports.
The latest reports from Italy claim former Rossoneri midfielder Seedorf is the hot favourite to take over from 46-year-old Allegri and is expected in Milan on Thursday.
Seedorf is still a registered player with Botafogo, although reports claim he has a clause in his contract allowing him to walk away from the Brazilian club if a coaching position is tabled by another club.
Italy's domestic news agency ANSA, however, said Botafogo are keen to hold on to the Dutchman at least until after the Copa Libertadores, the south American equivalent of Europe's Champions League which starts on January 29.
The report quoted former club president Carlos Augusto Montenegro, still an influential figure at Botafogo, as saying: "If you want Seedorf, then send us Kaka and Robinho to play in the Copa.
"Otherwise, he won't be leaving at any cost."
Kaka and Robinho, both Brazilians, are currently with Milan.
Team captain and goalkeeper Jefferson claimed Seedorf's mind was still firmly with the Brazilian side, suggesting he could be a long-term solution rather than take over for the rest of this campaign.
"These are all just rumours, he has a contract, is a professional and is only focused on the team," said Jefferson. "We also have a great chance to win the Libertadores and we rely on Clarence."
For the moment, assistant coach Mauro Tassotti is at the Milan helm, although reports in Italy suggest former striker Filippo Inzaghi, the club's youth coach, could come in as caretaker for the rest of the season.
He would be handed the task of rescuing what many have labelled Milan's worst season of the modern era.
After Sunday's reverse to Sassuolo, a team Allegri helped lead into Serie B in 2008, Milan sit 11th but 30 points behind leaders Juventus and 20 behind Napoli, who occupy the third and last qualifying spot for the Champions League.
Sassuolo's four goals came from Domenico Berardi, the 19-year-old sensation's feat sealing Allegri's fate when it prompted a verbal attack from club vice-president Barbara Berlusconi.
Berlusconi, the daughter of club owner and president Silvio Berlusconi, had launched a scathing attack on club CEO Adriano Galliani prior to Christmas which prompted the official to offer his resignation before eventually back-pedalling.
On Sunday Berlusconi pointed the finger directly at Allegri and said an "urgent change" was needed at the helm of the seven-time European champions.
"A disappointing night, just like others, which confirms that a change is necessary and urgent," Barbara Berlusconi said.
"We can no longer tolerate the fact that our fans have to put up with performances like these."
Early on Monday, Milan released a statement which said: "AC Milan announces that it has dismissed as coach of the first team, with immediate effect, Mr. Massimiliano Allegri and his staff.
"AC Milan would like to thank Mr. Allegri and his staff for the work done and wishes them the best professional success. The team will be run on a caretaker basis by Mr. Mauro Tassotti."
Allegri took over Milan in time for the 2010/2011 season and won the title in his first season in charge.
Milan finished runners-up the following season but Allegri saw his side decimated as a host of key players -- among whom Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Thiago Silva and Seedorf -- all left the club.