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Spalletti accepts Roma challenge

Luciano Spalletti has been appointed head coach of AS Roma on a two-year contract after leaving Udinese Calcio.

Udinese achievement
The 46-year-old quit the Friuli stadium claiming he could not guarantee fourth place in Serie A every season - the finish he achieved in 2004/05 which led to Udinese qualifying for the UEFA Champions League for the first time.

European chance
Roma will play in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup despite losing the Coppa Italia final against FC Internazionale Milano this week, due to the Nerazzurri already having booked a Champions League spot.

Turbulent campaign
The Giallorossi finished eighth in Serie A after a season which saw four coaches come and go. They have already started reinforcing their squad this summer with the signings of Rodrigo Taddei, Samuel Kuffour and Shabani Nonda.

Meteoric rise
Spalletti began his coaching career at Empoli FC, the team he steered to consecutive promotions from Serie C1 to Serie A between 1995 and 1997. He has also taken charge of UC Sampdoria, AC Venezia and Ancona Calcio.