Pietro Vierchowod spoke to the fans for the first time since his appointment as Coach of Fiorentina 1926 Florentia.
“I am overjoyed to be back in Florence,” said the defender who had worn the Viola shirt in 1981-82. I know there is a great deal to do here, but this challenge does not scare me.”
The 43-year-old beat competition from Renzo Ulivieri, Antonio Di Gennaro and Alberto Cavasin in order to take charge of the new club in Serie C2.
“As soon as director Giovanni Galli asked me if I would be willing to accept this job I said yes. I really want to see how I do in an emotional battle against the odds.”
The club was created last week following the bankruptcy of AC Fiorentina, but effectively there is no team of players. All the Viola stars are free from their contracts.
This is a particularly tricky situation for a club that makes its official debut in the Coppa Italia C against Pisa on August 21.
“I realise that time is not on our side,” affirmed Vierchowod, “but there are no problems as I have a solid club behind me that guarantees intelligent planning.”
“Above all, I also have enthusiastic fans to support us all. We will field youngsters in the Coppa and attempt to be ready for the start of the season. I’m aiming for a squad that has a good mixture of experience and youth.”
The former Fiorentina youth team is still technically at their disposal, even if the players are not under contract.
All under the age of 21, Inter have shown particular interest in captain Gabriele Baronetto, a talented midfielder with great promise for the future.
Patron Diego Della Valle warned, “I’d like to send a message to those clubs who are trying to snatch our youth players. Let them show friendship to Fiorentina by not poaching our best men in this time of need.”
“As for the players themselves,” he added, “staying with us would be an investment for their own future. Here you can gain first team experience and earn results with the Viola.”
I hope they make it back up here soon.