With Leeds United new owner Andrea Radrizzani hailing from Italy, links to Italian managers are only predictable. After all, if Radrizzani had been paying attention to Serie A in the past, he might want to appoint a manager he is familiar with and knows has the goods to manage Leeds.
Former Watford manager Walter Mazzarri has been linked in reports from Italy with a switch to Elland Road. Mazzarri has an impressive record in Italy, having managed Napoli, Inter Milan, and Sampdoria in Serie A. His Napoli teams were the most successful of the teams he managed. While his record at Watford may be a bit underwhelming, having only barely escaped the drop, but he was considered a superstar of a manager in Italy before being sacked by Inter Milan in the middle of his second season at the club.
Mazzarri made Napoli a force in Italian football again, reaching heights for the Naples club that had not been seen since Diego Maradona played for the club. Under Mazzarri, Napoli qualified for the Champions League three times and finished second to Juventus in the 2012-13 season. His Napoli team also finished above Manchester City in the group stages of the 2011-12 Champions League, and lost in the round of 16 in extra time to eventual champions Chelsea.
Since Mazzarri has a higher profile in Italy and on the continent than in England, landing him may be a bit of a dream appointment for Radrizzani. However, Mazzarri may feel he has unfinished business in England and may jump at the chance to manage a “sleeping giant” in Leeds, just as he did in Italy with Napoli. Of course, he is rumored to be linked with St Etienne in Ligue 1 as well, so one of these “links” in the Italian media, where is he also linked to Celta Vigo in La Liga and Crystal Palace in the Premier League, may just be agent talk to try to get his client a better deal.