Napoli’s Maurizio Sarri wins coach of the year award for Serie A


Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri. (Cesare Abbate/ANSA via AP)

FLORENCE, Italy — Napoli’s Maurizio Sarri was voted coach of the year in Serie A on Monday, beating Massimiliano Allegri and Eusebio Di Francesco.

The award, known as the Panchina d’oro (golden bench), recognizes the best coach of the previous season, as voted for by their peers.

The 58-year-old Sarri received 25 of 61 votes, three more than Allegri, the Juventus coach who won the award last year. Di Francesco, who coaches Sassuolo, was third with seven votes.

It was the second Panchina d’oro award for Sarri, who won the Serie B prize for the 2013-14 season when he guided Empoli to second place and direct promotion.

"Usually getting an award doesn’t give me particular satisfaction, I often consider it as time taken away from my work," Sarri said. "But this gives me enthusiasm and happiness, and I think that’s because it was a decision made by my colleagues."

Sarri is the first coach of Napoli to win the prize and breaks a four-year winning streak for Juventus — Allegri’s victory last year followed three straight wins for Antonio Conte.

Napoli finished second last season, behind Juventus, in Sarri’s first year in charge of his hometown club.

Also, former Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri received a special prize at Monday’s ceremony. Ranieri guided Leicester to the Premier League title last year but the Italian was fired nine months later with his team close to the relegation zone.


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