Francesco Guidolin returns to Palermo, where he was hired and fired three times. “I had wonderful moments here, but now I represent Udinese.”
The Coach had a complex rapport with President Maurizio Zamparini, as the pair argued and made up repeatedly during the four-year spell, often in public.
“I will keep my emotions to myself,” said Guidolin. “Palermo was a great chapter of my career and I had wonderful moments here, getting to know extraordinary people, but now I represent Udinese and this is a match.
“President Zamparini sought me out, listened to me and gave me what I wanted. He trusted me.”
Even with that trust, he took over mid-season in January 2004, taking the Rosanero to promotion and UEFA Cup qualification.
He returned to the bench a year after his departure, was fired in April 2007 and re-hired a month later.
Replaced by Stefano Colantuono, Guidolin was recalled yet again in November 2007 and fired once more before the end of the season.
“We need a performance of grit, temperament and aggression to emerge unbeaten from the Barbera. Palermo are always dangerous on home turf, even if they are missing a couple of players.
“We've got to rely on our heart, legs and brain. I expect to face a very motivated and determined Palermo, so we have to match them all the way.”
It is also set to be a showdown between two South American talents: Alexis Sanchez and Javier Pastore.
“They are different players, but undoubtedly enormous talents. No other youngsters have made such an impact in Serie A this season. The future belongs to them.”