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Lure of former protégé Kalinic: Gattuso becomes coach in Split

In February of this year, Gennaro Gattuso’s tenure at Olympique Marseille came to an end after just five months. Less than four months later, the 46-year-old joins Hajduk Split in Croatia

After just one competitive match win since the turn of the year, Olympique Marseille pulled the ripcord in mid-February and relieved Gennaro Gattuso of his duties as head coach. While OM finished the season in eighth place and thus outside the European places, Gattuso was looking for a job – and now found what he was looking for in sunny Dalmatia.

“HNK Hajduk are delighted to confirm today that the legendary Gennaro Gattuso will be our first team manager for the new season. He has signed a contract until the summer of 2026 and will arrive in Split next week,” Hajduk Split wrote in a press release on Wednesday evening.

The former Squadra Azzurra midfielder will take over from Mislav Karoglan, who has already been replaced by Jure Ivankovic on an interim basis for the last seven games of the season, at last year’s third-placed team in the Croatian HNL. This is Gattuso’s eighth stint as a professional head coach

Many titles as a player, only one as a coach

The 2006 Italian world champion has not yet been able to build on his successful years as a player, in which Gattuso won the Champions League and Serie A twice with AC Milan, among others, in his role on the touchline.

Only during his time at SSC Napoli, which the 46-year-old coached from December 2019 to June 2021, was he able to lift a trophy in the recent past, winning the Italian Cup.

In Split, Gattuso will be reunited with Nikola Kalinic, who ended his active career this summer and is now the club’s sporting director. Gattuso once coached the former center forward himself in Milan – and apparently left a positive impression

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