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Kilmarnock’s new Italian coach

As wind, rain and plenty of midges swirled around an open field in Largs, you would have forgiven Angelo Alessio for casting his mind back to all that he has left behind.

Swapping the bright lights of the Juventus Centre or Chelsea’s plush Cobham complex for life in Ayrshire is not your typical career path in coaching but for Kilmarnock’s new Italian coach, the challenge was irresistible.

The 54-year-old has the unenviable task of following the footsteps of Steve Clarke, who departed to manage Scotland’s National Team after leading Killie to back-to-back club record points totals and their best league season in 53 years.

Many would have shirked at the task of replacing a man who was known simply as Sir Steve amongst the Killie faithful but Alessio was keen to emerge from the shadow of Antonio Conte, following the pair’s successful partnership at Juventus, Chelsea and the Italian National Team.

Regardless of his football surroundings, Alessio says the founding principles of hard work, focus and attention to detail are universal and these will form the building blocks of his work at Killie.

“I worked with Antonio Conte for eight years, we won a lot of trophies, and I learned if you want to win then you need to work hard every single day.

“We have good, professional players. If we want to follow last season, we need to work hard every day.

“Steve Clarke left me a big legacy and I am very excited for the challenge ahead.”

Finishing third in last season’s Scottish Premiership ensured Killie qualified for European competition for the first time in 18 years with Welsh side Connah’s Quay Nomads….

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