Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Rossoneri get live wire in Seedorf

New manager the hot topic

  • Print

When AC Milan director Adriano Galliani remarked that incoming manager Clarence Seedorf would "give a jolt" to the slumping Serie A side he wasn't exaggerating.

Just four days removed from his retirement as a player and yet to oversee his first match in charge of the Rossoneri, Seedorf's return to the San Siro has nevertheless been all that anyone around the team -- players, administrators, reporters, fans -- has wanted to discuss.

And that, at least in the mind of club owner and former Italian president Silvio Berlusconi, will have already helped justify the somewhat controversial appointment of a long-time Milan midfielder without either coaching experience or the credentials typically required by the Italian Football Federation.

The sports dailies, of which there are many in Italy, have been plastered with pictures of Seedorf since his Tuesday exit from Brazilian side Botafogo, and everyone from current player Nigel de Jong to iconic striker Andriy Shevchenko to Juventus boss Antonio Conte has been quick to offer their best wishes to the likeable Dutchman.

Even Russia manager Fabio Capello, who worked at the San Siro in a trio of stints between 1987 and 1998, seemed to back off previous statements in which he advised Seedorf against jumping straight into the Milan job when, in a Friday interview with the club's official television channel, he expressed his belief that the 37-year-old had everything it would take to succeed.

"(Seedorf) has always had a great deal of character, and that's something you never lose -- no matter the role," Capello added.

Character, incidentally, is something Milan have quite clearly been lacking through what has so far been a disastrous campaign.

The seven-time European champions have won just twice in Serie A since the third week of October, and coming into Sunday's match at home to Hellas Verona -- which will be Seedorf's first as manager -- they sit 10 points back of their promoted opponents, 20 adrift of the Champions League places and 30 in arrears of table-toppers Juventus.

As far as performances are concerned Seedorf's "jolt" had better translate into improved results, and to that end it seems the four-time Champions League winner is planning a tactical shake-up intended to accommodate Milan's attacking strengths -- lining up Keisuke Honda, Kaka and Robinho in support of Mario Balotelli in a 4-2-3-1 formation.

"Seedorf will shake up the team," Galliani confirmed on Friday. "I have only had positive vibes about him so far. He is very motivated for this adventure."

Of course, motivation will take a rookie manager only so far. But this isn't the first time Berlusconi has played a hunch in his appointments.

In 1987 he hired former shoe salesman Arrigo Sacchi to coach Milan and was repaid with a Scudetto and two European Cups.

Only time will tell if Seedorf can deliver similar success, but for the moment at least the critics have been appeased.


Spot kicks

  • AC Milan-Hellas Verona kicks off Sunday at 1:30 p.m. and can be seen on beIN Sports.

In a Friday interview with, Milan midfielder Nigel De Jong sounded confident of an immediate turn-around under Seedorf, saying, "We will try to climb back up the standings and return to the European places...We have the elements and the talent to have a great second half to the season.

  • Projected AC Milan lineup: Abbiati; De Sciglio, Rami, Zapata, Emanuelson; De Jong, Montolivo; Honda, Kaka, Robinho; Balotelli
  • Projected Hellas Verona lineup: Rafael; Cacciatore, Moras, Maietta, Agostini; Romulo, Frello, Hallfredsson; Iturbe, Toni, Taleb Twitter @JerradPeters

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 18, 2014 C6

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes


  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.


Make text: Larger | Smaller


Trouba talks about injury and potential for Jets

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Carolyn Kavanagh(10) had this large dragonfly land on her while spending time at Winnetka Lake, Ontario. photo by Andrea Kavanagh (mom0 show us your summer winnipeg free press
  • Water lilys are reflected in the pond at the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden Tuesday afternoon. Standup photo. Sept 11,  2012 (Ruth Bonneville/Winnipeg Free Press)

View More Gallery Photos


Are you concerned about the number of homicides so far this year?

View Results

Ads by Google