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De Zerbi set to sign for Marseille, ending speculation of top European moves

13. June 2024
Roberto De Zerbi (foto: Getty Images)
Italian coach Roberto De Zerbi, previously linked with top European clubs like Liverpool, Bayern, and Barcelona, has unexpectedly signed with French giants Marseille.

Roberto De Zerbi, the Italian tactician, left Brighton at the end of last season. The 45-year-old had been associated with numerous European football giants, but ultimately, he ended up at the struggling French club Marseille.

For months, De Zerbi had been linked with some of the strongest clubs in Europe. He was touted as a possible replacement for Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool, Thomas Tuchel at Bayern, and Xavi Hernandez at Barcelona. However, these teams chose other managerial options in the end.

There was also talk that the 45-year-old coach might return to Italy to take over one of the leading Serie A teams. However, he has ended up in France. He has agreed to a deal with the struggling giant Marseille.

De Zerbi is set to sign a three-year contract with Marseille in the coming hours. Despite leaving Brighton voluntarily, Marseille will pay a €6 million compensation fee to Brighton due to a clause in his contract that required his new club to pay compensation if he secured another job.

The French club, aiming to climb back to the top of the Ligue 1 table, should have no issue with the compensation fee.

De Zerbi views the job at Marseille as a significant challenge in his career. He believes that moving to Ligue 1 from the Premier League is the right step, and we will see what he can achieve with this club.

Marseille had a modest season in the league, finishing only eighth, so it's no surprise that the club's management decided to bring in De Zerbi to elevate the team.

Marseille is a giant of French football. They have won the league title nine times, but the last one was in 2010. They have also been runners-up several times in the meantime.

The club has also been waiting for a Coupe de France trophy for a long time, having won it 10 times, but the last victory was 35 years ago.

Of course, Marseille's greatest success in history is winning the Champions League in the 1992/1993 season. They previously lost the final to Red Star Belgrade and have also lost three Europa League finals in 1999, 2004, and 2018.

De Zerbi is sure to pursue trophies. He is known for his offensive football style, which he has implemented in all the teams he has coached.

The Italian started his career with Darfo Boario, then led Foggia, Palermo, Benevento, and Sassuolo, before moving to Ukraine where he spent a year with Shakhtar Donetsk.

For well-known reasons and the ongoing war, he left Ukraine. In 2022, he joined Brighton and achieved solid results with the club.

However, with the squad he had, mid-table was the maximum, which likely led him to leave the club and seek opportunities elsewhere.

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