Marco Ianni provided one of the biggest talking points from Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with Manchester United on Saturday (20/10/18) when the second assistant coach’s touchline celebrations drew Jose Mourinho’s ire.
Former Chelsea boss Mourinho was enraged by Ianni after he celebrated wildly in front of him following Ross Barkley’s late equaliser at Stamford Bridge.
The Portuguese later revealed Ianni had apologised to him, and that he now considered the matter “over”, but it brought one of Maurizio Sarri’s backroom staff into the spotlight.
Ianni was appointed by Chelsea in early August, joining a team that included former Chelsea players Hilario, Carlo Cudicini and Gianfranco Zola.
Ianni, who was born in 1982, retired from football at the age of 32 and immediately turned his attention to coaching.
He spent two years on the staff of Roberto Cappellacci in his native Italy – first with Cosenza and then Campobasso – before joining Sarri at Napoli, where Ianni worked as the club’s technical assistant.
In a recent interview, Ianni revealed he had “a good professional and human relationship” with Sarri.
He will hope that ensures he avoids serious punishment after the Chelsea coach stressed he had to be “very hard” on Ianni for the incident with Mourinho.
Mourinho appeared on course to record a first victory as United boss at his old club thanks to Anthony Martial, the Frenchman’s brace overturning a half-time deficit.
Martial volleyed home to cancel out Antonio Rudiger’s 21st-minute header before curling in what looked like being the winner from the edge of the penalty area.
However, substitute Barkley – a major injury doubt for the fixture – made sure Maurizio Sarri avoided his first league defeat as Chelsea boss by smashing home a rebound in the sixth and final minute of additional time.
The dramatic finish sparked wild scenes of celebration on and off the Bridge.