‘Let’s experience this season with passion!’: Gennaro Gattuso announces his arrival as Valencia manager amid angry opposition of his appointment over historic controversial comments about women and homosexuality
- Gennaro Gattuso is now confirmed as the new manager of Spanish side Valencia
- The Italian has previously managed Palermo, AC Milan and most recently Napoli
- Gattuso has been criticised for historic comments on women and homosexuality
- Fans of the LaLiga outfit have furiously opposed the 44-year-old’s appointment
Gennaro Gattuso urged Valencia fans to replicate his ‘passion’ after being revealed as the club’s new manager – despite supporters’ fierce opposition to his appointment.
The Italian, 44, has been confirmed as the LaLiga’s side latest boss after Jose Bordalas was sacked in June.
Fans have furiously criticised the club’s decision to bring him in over historic controversial comments about women and homosexuality.
In a glossy promotional video announcing his arrival, he said: ‘I experienced a respected Valencia. A team, together with the fans, everything connected by heart.
‘For me, football means passion, it means respect for the game and love for playing with the ball.
‘I know what it is like to fear Valencia, I have seen great teams fall at this stadium, which this season will be 100 years old. Valencianistas, let’s experience this season with passion and let’s enjoy the DNA of Valencia. I’m here.’
Gennaro Gattuso delivered a message to fans after being revealed as Valencia’s new manager
The club released a glossy video on Thursday announcing his arrival – but fans have criticised his appointment due to historic controversial comments about women and homosexuality
The Spanish side have been on the hunt for a new manager since Jose Bordalas’ departure
He then signed off with a message in Catalan, saying ‘Amunt Valencia!’, meaning ‘Go Valencia!’ in the regional language.
The clip shows Gattuso entering the historic Mestalla Stadium in eastern Spain, walking past the club’s trophy cabinet, admiring a wall adorned with pictures of famous former players and managers.
Former Palermo, AC Milan and Napoli boss Gattuso is then shown walking up the steps, onto the floodlit pitch and raising a thumbs-up to the camera.
Journalist Fabrizio Romano revealed on Twitter that he will sign a two-year contract on around £2.5million, or about £50,000-a-week, plus add-ons.
Fans banded together as a reaction to historic comments made by Gattuso, which he has since come out and issued a staunch defence over in the Italian media
Valencia fans have a history for coming together in a bid to bring about change at the club
In 2008, Gattuso found himself in hot water when he spoke out on same-sex marriage, insisting ‘marriage is between a man and a woman’. Five years later he said he ‘didn’t see women working in football’ after the appointment of Barbara Berlusconi to an executive role at AC Milan.
He also made a comment in 2013 claiming less importance is given to when white players are booed, compared to black players.
Those words saw Tottenham fans get #NoToGattuso trending as the north London club considered hiring him to replace Jose Mourinho, before swerving clear of Gattuso and eventually settling on Nuno Espirito Santo.
On Saturday, Gattuso gave an interview in La Gazzetta dello Sport, blasting ‘terrible accusations’ and saying: ‘My history speaks for itself. I’m racist? I’m homophobic? I’m xenophobic? I’m sexist? Have we gone mad? It’s time to calm down.’