Zeman returns to Cagliari helm

Relegation-threatened Cagliari sacked Zola on Monday after less than three months in charge following a miserable run of results.

And by Monday evening, Zeman found himself back at the helm of the Serie A club, with the club saying in a statement: “Cagliari announce that the technical team has been entrusted to Zdenek Zeman and his staff composed of Vincenzo Cangelosi, Giacomo Modica and Roberto Ferola.

“Zeman and his working group (come) with the best wishes for the achievement of the objectives that the club and fans expect.”

Zola had been a replacement for Zeman in late December last year but Sunday’s 2-0 defeat at Sampdoria was Cagliari’s fifth loss in their last six league games and was the final straw for the club’s board.

The former Chelsea star, who played at Cagliari before retiring from professional football in 2005, had guided the Sardinian side to just two victories in 10 games in charge.

The outcome in Genoa left Cagliari in 18th place, four points adrift of safety.

A statement from the club earlier on Monday read: “Cagliari announces it has dismissed Gianfranco Zola and his staff.

“It’s a painful decision taken by the club with respect to a great man that has written unforgettable pages in this club’s history books.

“We wish to thank Zola and his staff for the work, dedication and passion shown in recent months.

“We wish all of them the best in their careers.”

Cagliari, who host Empoli on Saturday, are winless since January 24 and have collected one point since.