AC Milan coach Leonardo to quit at the end of season
Brazilian World Cup winner Leonardo has announced that he will quit his job as coach for AC Milan after the last game of the season against Juventus, to be played this week-end.
AFP - Brazilian World Cup winner Leonardo on Friday announced that he is leaving seven-time champions of Europe AC Milan.
The young coach, who was in his first season leading a team, was speaking in a press conference ahead of Saturday night's Serie A clash against Juventus.
The 40-year-old was joined by Milan's vice-president Adriano Galliani for the press conference to confirm what was an open secret in Italy, that he will not be continuing beyond the end of the season.
"We're here together to communicate our separation by mutual consent in a calm and serene way, as has been our relationship throughout the years," said Leonardo.
"There's no surprise, everything is very clear, today as it has always been.
"We've come to the end. The goal of reaching the Champions League, which was hugely important to me, has been achieved and this morning we decided to make the decision official.
"The time has come to part ways but in a calm manner."
Leonardo, who was part of the Milan management before assuming the role of head coach following Carlo Ancelotti's departure for Chelsea last summer, was in his first role as a coach at a club he served with distinction as a player.
However, he had come under fire from early on this season as Milan failed to seriously challenge for silverware.
They are guaranteed to finish third in Serie A regardless of the result in their final match of the season against Juve.
But they crashed out of the Champions League in the second round with a 7-2 aggregate defeat to Manchester United and also fell at the quarter-final stage of the Coppa Italia.
Their title challenge fell away in March and April after a succession of poor results against relative minnows.