Manchester City confirm that Celtic candidate Enzo Maresca has joined Italian side

By Euan Davidson

May 27, 2021

Celtic managerial candidate Enzo Maresca has left Manchester City to join Parma.

Two days ago, we shared that Maresca was having talks with the sleeping Italian giants. Having suffered relegation to Serie B, the historically troubled club are moving in a new direction. That direction, it turns out, involves the Man City Elite Development coach, who was reportedly on Celtic’s wish list to replace Neil Lennon.

In a statement, Manchester City announced:

“Enzo Maresca is to leave his position at Head Coach of Manchester City’s Elite Development Squad in order to take up a new challenge as manager of Italian club Parma.

“The 41-year-old joined City last summer and oversaw a season which saw City’s EDS youngsters claim a first-ever Premier League 2 title.

“Everyone at Manchester City wishes Enzo the very best in his new role at Parma.”

Maresca has quite a job to do. Parma finished dead last in Serie A in 20-21, winning just three times and amassing 20 points [Sky Sports]. Roberto D’Aversa subsequently left the club, opening the door for the former Sevilla and Juventus player [Football-Italia].

Enzo Maresca with Man City’s first Premier League 2 trophy / (Photo by Matt McNulty – Manchester City/Manchester City FC via Getty Images)

Time will tell if Celtic missed out with Enzo Maresca decision

Clearly, whether Celtic were truly interested in Enzo Maresca or not, he’s no longer an option. Speculation surrounding Maresca was met with uncertainty. While his relationship with Fergal Harkin, a favourite for the Celtic Director of Football job, seemed perfect, he’s inexperienced in top-level management.

There are also plenty who would assume Maresca had an easy job. Manchester City’s Elite Development side, after all, have the means to hoover up youth talent worldwide. That’s not entirely fair, though, and Maresca picking up the team’s first Premier League 2 trophy shows that solid coaching was integral.

Would he have been the fan favourite to take over at Celtic? Undoubtedly, no. With Eddie Howe already being all but confirmed, any other name wouldn’t do at this point. Still, it’ll be interesting to see how his Parma side play, and how well he gets on in the notoriously tough Serie B.

As introductions to senior management go, this is a tough one. However, his playing experience and coaching nous indicate he could well make the best of it. One thing Parma need in this era is consistency. Bringing the storied Italian club back to Serie A for an extended stay represents a job well done.

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