Marcello Lippi, manager of the Azzurri, will attempt to become the second head coach to win consecutive World Cups. Only Vittorio Pozzo, the legendary manager of the 1934 and 1938 Italian World Cup triumphs, holds that distinction. Pozzo also won the 1936 Olympic Gold Medal in Berlin with the Azzurri. Brazil in 1962 was the last team to successfully defend its World Cup title.
His Record on the Italian Bench
Overall, Lippi’s record (to the best of my knowledge) during his second stint on the Azzurri bench is 11 wins, 7 draws, and 3 losseswith a 55% winning rate.
During his first tenure from 2004 to 2006, his record was 18 wins, 9 draws, and 2 losses with a 62% winning rate.
Historic Record: 29 wins, 16 draws, and 5 losses with a 58% winning rate.
He has only lost 3 competitive games and 5 overall:
- In 2004 during World Cup qualification against Slovenia: 1 x 0.
- In 2009 during the Confederations Cup in South Africa against Brasil 0 x 3 and Egypt 0 x 1.
- The only other matches that he lost was his first friendly on the bench in August 2004 against Iceland: 2 x 0, and a London friendly against Brazil in February 2009: 0 x 3.
During an interview with the Milan sports daily, La Gazzetta dello Sport, Lippi discussed Alessandro Nesta, Antonio Cassano, his own future, Carlo Ancelotti, Fabio Capello and the problem of lasers at Italian grounds.
On the Possible Return of Alessandro Nesta of AC Milan
“Nesta? Sono cose mie. Che non discuto qui con voi. Lasciatemi lavorare e poi giudicherete nel tempo”.
“Alessandro Nesta? That is only my concern. I’m not going to discuss that here with you. Let me work in peace and you will be able to judge in time.”
On Antonio Cassano of Sampdoria
“Non mi è mai passato per l’anticamera del cervello di dire che avevo ragione io su Antonio”.
“I never gave it a second thought to say that I was right about Antonio.”
On His Own Future
“Non è che ho cominciato a parlare del Mondiale 2014, era una risposta a una domanda sul fascino del Brasile. Non ho mai detto nulla di categorico. Ribadisco che ho un grande rapporto con Abete e con lui ho sempre parlato chiaro. Se ho deciso cosa fare? Questo non è importante, ora l’unica cosa che conta è assemblare un gruppo per far bene in Sudafrica”.
“It’s not that I have begun to talk about the 2014 World Cup. It was a response to a question about the fascination of Brazil. I have never said anything otherwise. I state again that I have a great relationship with Giancarlo Abete (President of the Italian FA) and with him I’ve always spoken frankly. Have I decided to leave? This is not important. The only thing now that counts is to assemble a group to do well in South Africa.”
On Carlo Ancelotti and Fabio Capello
“Aspettarsi risultati positivi dalle sue squadre è normale. Ha creato una formazione molto concreta. La questione John Terry? Mi sono piaciute moltissimo le parole di Carlo Ancelotti: sulla serietà professionale del capitano, che è quello che interessa a un allenatore. E siccome una volta ho detto di aver sognato una finale Italia-Brasile, ora dico che mi piacerebbe una bella finale Italia-Inghilterra per vedere come Fabio si comporterebbe davanti all’inno di Mameli”.
“To expect positive results from his sides (Capello) is normal. He has created a very concrete formation. The question of John Terry? I was very pleased by the words of Carlo Ancelotti on the professional attitude of his captain. That is what interests a manager. And once upon a time I said that I dreamed of a World Cup final between Italy and Brazil. Now I say that it would please me to have a great final between Italy and England to see how Fabio would act upon hearing the Italian anthem.”
On the Problem of Green Lasers Distracting Players at Italian Grounds
“Potrebbero farli azzurri invece che verdi…”
“They could make them blue instead of green…”
Italian source courtesy of La Gazzetta dello Sport, 4 February 2010.
Italian to English translation by Steve Amoia of World Football Commentaries.