Gravina and Mancini, question and answer in Le Iene

The president of the FIGC and the former coach after the surprise divorce in August

Roberto Mancini and Gabriele Gravina, the former coach of the national team and the president of the FIGC: after the divorce the (almost) face to face. This summer Mancini said goodbye to the national team to fly to Saudi Arabia, where, as coach, he will receive around 25 million euros a year for four years. Mancini spoke of personal choice, adding to the comments also that the FIGC president Gabriele Gravina had changed the staff to whom he was linked. The news chased each other but the two protagonists never returned to the topic. In the report broadcast tonight in prime time, on Italia 1, Stefano Corti for Le Iene met both of them to try to clarify, between one controversy and another.

Gravina: “The bitterness is still there”

When asked why Mancini resigned, President Gravina replied to the correspondent’s microphones: “You have to ask Roberto Mancini this, at this moment I still can’t remove the bitterness I felt. I shared five years with Roberto and when live five years of sensitivity, very strong emotions, a historic result, how can you deny everything? It would be an incredible defeat for me to think of having invested in a human relationship that then leaves nothing behind” – and he continues -, “we all have fragilities, he expressed some of them with some statementsin my opinion, incorrect, I cannot take the bait and live by relying only on those declarations.” Corti asked him if it was true that Mancini had come to him several times to talk about the problems and why he wanted to leave the national team.

Gravina explains: “No, Roberto and I didn’t talk about this issue, neither in the five years nor a minute before he wanted to present his resignation. Let’s say that he had moments of hesitation a few hours before sending the certified e-mail”. Finally, Iena asks him if he felt betrayed by Mancini: “Betrayed I don’t know, I repeat, I still can’t remove this bitterness. I believe he made a mistake in his methods, in his timing. I guarantee you that I would never have opposed it, because compared to proposals that I read in the press, this one certainly had to be accepted. He would not have remained with the same enthusiasm when faced with such a proposal.”

Mancini: “I was disappointed too”

After Gravina, Le Iene meet Mancini. “How am I now? It’s a bit tiring, it’s a bit different”, says the former coach, who also spends a few words on Italy’s qualification for Euro 2024: “This makes me very happy. They are all boys who deserved this, they had already had a big disappointment for the World Cup, then it’s right that Italy can be there to defend the title.” Then we move on to the discussion involving his personal choice to leave for Saudi Arabia. We read what Gravina declared, that is, that with Spalletti Italy has turned a corner. – the correspondent tells him -. “But I’m happy,” exclaims Mancini.

Corti continues by saying that Gravina declared that he was upset by his decision, also because he would have done it from one day to the next. Mancini explains: “I was disappointed too. Let’s say that after so many years, perhaps, sometimes, a decision had to be made. Maybe it’s a decision that should have been made a little earlier, but, at the same time, I can also understand that one could feel bad about it. I too was disappointed by many things, and with great regret because I would have stayed another ten years, if it had been possible. Something had changed compared to before, but can I say something? Too much has been said.” (Referring to the news that appeared in the press, ed.): “When there were serious newspapers, journalists, editors and owners of newspapers, true things were written, now a lot of nonsense is written. The things written are mostly nonsense: I left for many reasons.”

So he didn’t leave for money. “That is also one of the reasons”, he concludes. To make both of them smile, the Hyenas give Roberto Mancini a small reproduction of the work commonly known as Il Dito, by Maurizio Cattelan, by Gabriele Gravina.