Arguably the most memorable manager in recent Napoli history, Walter Mazzarri has a new job: he's just been hired by Watford to oversee their campaign next season, replacing the recently departed Quique Sanchez Flores.
OFFICIAL: Walter Mazzarri has signed a three-year contract to become #watfordfc Head Coach from 1st July 2016. pic.twitter.com/8bdQotvFHA— Watford FC (@WatfordFC) May 21, 2016
Watford will still be in the Premier League after securing safety late in the season, and this will finally see Mazzarri fulfill his long-held desire to manage in the EPL. The animated and passionate Italian will have his work cut out for him if he's going to succeed there, but you can guarantee one thing: he's going to attack the job with zeal and with his own unique spin on the game.
Something of a divisive figure among some parts of the fanbase thanks to a tumultuous final season in charge of Napoli, it's impossible to deny that Mazzarri's tenure at the San Paolo was a tremendously successful one. He earned the club two Champions League berths and took eventual champs Chelsea to the limit in the knockout rounds in 2012. Mazzarri also did a lot to further the careers of the likes of Marek Hamsik and Edinson Cavani, and while he was far from perfect as a manager, it is impossible to argue against the fact that Mazzarri left the club much better than it was when he arrived.
This will be his second job after leaving Napoli, following an adversarial and unimpressive stint at Inter that ended rather unceremoniously in November of 2014, early in his second season in charge. Mazzarri has been linked to various jobs since then, even including in Major League Soccer in the US, but his priority has clearly been to move to England all along. Watford apparently presented him with the best possible chance, and it certainly makes sense that they would want him -- after all, the Pozzo family that owns both that club and Udinese are believed to be quite fond of Mazzarri.
Hopefully we speak for most if not all Napoli fans when we say this: best of luck in England, Walter. Give 'em hell.