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World Cup winner Grosso takes charge of Brescia

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The struggling Serie A side have turned to an Italian star in an attempt to turn their fortunes around

Brescia have appointed Fabio Grosso as their new head coach.

The 41-year-old former Italy international takes charge following the departure of Eugenio Corini, who was sacked after the 2-1 Serie A defeat to rivals Hellas Verona.

Grosso was head coach of Verona last season but was dismissed in May, a month before they secured promotion back to Serie A with a play-off win over Cittadella.

The former Juventus and Inter full-back, who won two Serie A titles and the 2006 World Cup with Italy, was also previously the coach of Bari.

His first game in charge will be at home to Torino on Saturday, as Brescia look to arrest a run of three consecutive defeats, which has left them 19th in the table.

Last Sunday’s 2-1 loss to Verona was marred by an incident of racist abuse in which fans targeted Brescia striker Mario Balotelli.

Balotelli threatened to walk off the pitch after being subjected to taunts by a section of home supporters, although Hellas head coach Ivan Juric insisted after the match that the abuse was not racist in nature.

On Monday, Serie A announced they had issued the club with a one-match partial stadium ban, specifically targeting the Poltrone Est section of the stand, where the abuse against Balotelli was heard.

Verona have also banned leading ultra Luca Castellini for 11 years after he appeared on radio and claimed the racial element was only “in [Balotelli’s] own head”, that Balotelli cannot be considered “completely Italian” and the fans’ chants were to “make fun” of the striker, rather than racially abuse him.

The club said Castellini’s remarks were “expressions seriously contrary to those that distinguish the ethical principles and values of our club”.

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Grosso ended his playing career with Juventus in 2012 having also played for Palermo, Inter and Lyon. 

One year after hanging up his boots, Grosso took up a coaching position in Juventus’ youth system before being appointed as their U19 manager in 2014. 

The former left-back has struggled to cement his status as a manager however, having been in charge of both Bari and Verona for just 12 months. 

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