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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 18 December 2018

Luigi Di Biagio to take charge of Italy for March friendlies

Italy's Under 21 manager will take temporary charge of the senior team until a full-time replacement is found, the Italian federation confirms

Italy's Under 21 manager Luigi Di Biagio will take charge of the senior team for two international friendlies to be played in England in March 2018. Marco Bertorello / AFP
Italy's Under 21 manager Luigi Di Biagio will take charge of the senior team for two international friendlies to be played in England in March 2018. Marco Bertorello / AFP

Italy's Under 21 manager Luigi Di Biagio will take temporary charge of the senior team until a full-time replacement is found, the Italian federation (FIGC) confirmed on Monday.

Without a manager since their shock World Cup qualifying elimination in November, Italy take on both England and Argentina in friendlies in March.

"We have decided to give the job to Luigi Di Biagio given there are two internationals against Argentina in Manchester and against England in London in March," the FIGC said.

Temporary leader of the FIGC, Alessandro Costacurta, first told reporters on Friday the move was set to happen.

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"For the moment Gigi can consider himself coach of the Under 21's and the interim boss of the senior side too," said Costacurta, a former Italy international who won five European Cups and played 663 times for AC Milan.

"The most important things are the next matches and finding a new coach."

Italy lost to Sweden in the World Cup play-offs in November after which Gian Piero Ventura left the post, as the nation's fans went into mourning.

Di Biagio is an outsider amongst a star line-up of names being linked with the job including Roberto Mancini, Antonio Conte, Claudio Ranieri and Carlo Ancelotti.