Monday February 7 2011
Mazzarri and Del Neri tipped for award

Walter Mazzarri and Gigi Del Neri are the favourites for the Panchina d'Oro, which is Italy's prestigious Coach of the Year award.

Previous winners include Marcello Lippi, Fabio Capello and Carlo Ancelotti.

Del Neri already has one Panchina d'Oro on his mantelpiece at home from the 2001-02 season in recognition of the miracle he worked at Chievo.

La Gazzetta dello Sport understands he is being considered for the award again after leading Sampdoria to a fourth place finish in Serie A last season.

Walter Mazzarri is also said to be in the running after turning Napoli's fortunes around since last October.

The Partenopei currently lie second in Serie A, just three points behind League leaders Milan. They are now being taken seriously as title contenders.

Last year's awards ceremony was mired in controversy after the then Cagliari boss Max Allegri edged out Jose Mourinho.