Palermo reaping benefit of Maurizio Zamparini's faith
Palermo`s notoriously trigger-happy president Maurizio Zamparini appears to be a changed man with his team enjoying a seven-match Serie A unbeaten run.
Milan: Palermo`s notoriously trigger-happy president Maurizio Zamparini appears to be a changed man with his team enjoying a seven-match Serie A unbeaten run.
After sacking 21 coaches in 12 years of owning the Sicily team, Zamparini has been rewarded for sticking with Giuseppe Iachini despite a troubled start to the season.
Zamparini seemed on the verge of firing Iachini after Palermo picked up three points in their first six matches, suffering dismal back-to-back defeats at home to Lazio and at Empoli.
Palermo`s first win was a 2-1 success against Cesena on Oct. 19 and, despite a 2-0 reverse at champions Juventus in their next match, they have since taken 15 points from seven games to move into 10th place ahead of Sunday`s trip to lowly Atalanta.
Speaking last month about why he kept faith with Iachini, the president said he was looking forward to a long working relationship with the man he appointed to replace Gennaro Gattuso in September 2013.
"The team got a shock after the bad start. There was something going wrong in the dressing room. I analysed the situation with the coach and the team to find a solution to ourproblems," Zamparini said.
"I know Iachini very well, he was the captain of my Venezia and I was the one who created him as a coach. I think we will keep on working together for the next four or five years."
Palermo`s revival is based on the goals of Argentine Pablo Dybala, the form of keeper Stefano Sorrentino -- at 35 still one of the most reliable in Serie A -- and the emergence of Moroccan left back Achraf Lazaar who looks set to sign a new deal.
The Sicilian side will fancy their chances of extending their good run against misfiring Atalanta who sit in 16th place and have scored eight goals in 15 games.
The weekend programme begins later on Thursday with leaders Juventus, a point ahead of AS Roma, at struggling Cagliari while seventh-placed Napoli host bottom sider Parma.
Roma host AC Milan on Saturday while third-placed Lazio, 10 points behind Juve, visit Inter Milan on Sunday.