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Leicester City News: Guardiola’s trusted assistant agrees to become new manager

Leicester City have been busy interviewing candidates for the managerial job ahead of the 2023-24, with The Foxes looking to instantly win back promotion into the Premier League. The club are now extremely close to announcing their new boss, and a verbal agreement has been concluded with their preferred man.

According to Sky Sports, that man will be Enzo Maresca, who is currently one of Pep Guardiola’s assistant coaches at treble-winning Manchester City. Whilst this remains the case, it is understood there is still a little way to go in finalising certain aspects of the deal, but it would appear the 43-year-old Italian will soon be linking up with the Championship club.

The Leicester Mercury has confirmed that the club held talks with Dean Smith over remaining at the club as manager. He joined the club as caretaker but was unable to save them from the drop. Other names that were in the running were Scott Parker, now out of work since departing Club Brugge, and Steven Gerrard was another, but he is now primed to move to Saudi Arabia.

Dean Smith
8th May 2023; Craven Cottage, Fulham, London, England; Premier League Football, Fulham versus Leicester City; Leicester City manager Dean Smith appearing pitchside – Photo by Icon sport

Leicester would not be Maresca’s first managerial job, although he has predominantly served on various coaching staffs, as opposed to being to number one man. In 2021 he had quite a brief stint in charge of Palma, winning only four of his 14 matches at the helm. Before this he oversaw the Manchester City Elite Development Squad.

Over the last year, he has served under Guardiola and played his part in the club winning a historic treble, which was rounded off when beating Inter in the UEFA Champions League Final. Maresca’s name was mentioned quite early on in this particular managerial search, and he too has been touted with other jobs that have been available since the season finished.

The Telegraph highlighted that Maresca especially impressed during the interview, which seemingly was enough to sway the Leicester hierarchy to determine that he is indeed the one to take the club forward. He will be immediately tasked with putting together a team capable of winning promotion, and they are deemed favourites to do so with the bookies.

Enzo Maresca
Manchester City’s Erling Haaland (right) and coach Enzo Maresca during a training session at the City Football Academy, Manchester. Picture date: Tuesday June 6, 2023. – Photo by Icon sport

Leicester: What will Enzo Maresca bring to the club?

The general impression is that he is a coach that is growing in reputation throughout the game. The fact that Pep Guardiola was prepared to have his coaching alongside him is more than enough to prove that he knows the game and how to improve players.

Leicester will be naming only the second Italian to ever manage the club, the other being Claudio Ranieri, who of course guided the club famously to the Premier League title in 2015-16. Maresca clearly likes to work with young players, so perhaps this is the way Leicester will be looking to go down, and could highlight their likely type of transfer target.

The slight question mark comes regarding his lack of managerial experience in senior football. It really was a spell in Palma that he can offer in that regard, but he may argue he would have learned a lot from the experience. Nevertheless, it is still an exciting time for Leicester, who despite relegation, could be soon appointing a hot-prospect in the managerial game.

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