Fiorentina have officially fired Delio Rossi after he attacked Adem Ljajic in a dugout brawl (watch video below). “Unfortunately we had to take this decision.”
There were astounding scenes in the 2-2 draw with Novara when Ljajic was substituted after 36 minutes and sarcastically applauded the Coach, apparently also hurling insults.
Rossi lost his calm and attacked the teenage player, grabbing him by the neck and raining down a series of blows on his head when falling into the dugout.
“Unfortunately it was a serious incident and it’s all the more amazing considering he is such a calm person, but we had to fire the Coach," said patron Andrea Della Valle.
“In recent years this club has done great things with certain values and unfortunately we had to take this decision to sack the tactician. Tomorrow morning we will take more decisions and there will be time to find a replacement.
“It’s the last decision we wanted to take, but we feel it is also for his own good. I hadn’t realised what happened at the time, as I was in the stands and you cannot see it from there.
“We talked and he gave his explanation. He is ready to apologise, as he is such a good man, as proved throughout his career, but I had to make this decision. We are sorry for Rossi, as he does not deserve to be seen all over the world acting this way, but it was a serious incident and we had to fire him.
“There has been so much stress that accumulated over the last few months, although there can be no justification. When he sees the footage too, he will realise exactly what happened."
Rossi was brought in on November 7 to replace Sinisa Mihajlovic.
“There will also be punishment for the player, as he provoked the Coach, even if there should not have been such a reaction.
“Again, tomorrow we will discuss what exactly happened and what Ljajic said. Tomorrow we begin again. It’s sad that we were almost safe and are now in this situation, but we need one more point.”
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition  - £5,000 monthly.