Former AS Roma striker Vincenzo Montella has been installed as the Italian side's coach until the end of the season after the Giallorossi accepted the resignation of Claudio Ranieri.
The appointment marks a first managerial position for the 36-year-old Montella, who steps up from his role coaching in Roma's youth academy. As a player he had been on the club's books for a decade until 2009, scoring 83 goals in 194 Serie A games and winning the 2001 Scudetto as well as the 2007 Coppa Italia.
Since retiring in 2009, Montella had been working with Roma's Under-15s. Nicknamed 'Aeroplanino' (Little Aeroplane) in honour of his trademark goal celebration, Montella will meet the press for the first time as head coach on Tuesday.
Ranieri resigned in the wake of Sunday's 4-3 defeat at Genoa CFC, determined "send a message to the team" that had surrendered a three-goal lead. The Genoa reverse was an eighth defeat of the league campaign for Roma, who lie eighth in Serie A having lost four successive matches, including Wednesday's 3-2 home loss to FC Shakhtar Donetsk in the UEFA Champions League round of 16.
Rome-born Ranieri had replaced Luciano Spalletti in September 2009 and led the Giallorossi to second place in Serie A last season but has endured more trying times this term. "I went into the dressing room to tell the players I have decided to resign because I wanted to send a message to the team after a performance like today's," said the 59-year-old former Chelsea FC and Juventus coach.
"I hope my decision will help give the team extra motivation. I would like to thank the fans and the president because they have always supported us, even in difficult times." Roma face Shakhtar in the return leg in Ukraine on 8 March.
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