Five candidates for the Italy job: Ex-Manchester City and Chelsea bosses feature

Roberto Mancini, Roberto Di Matteo and three other candidates to replace Cesare Prandelli.

Prandelli's resignation as Italy manager yesterday ended a four-year reign at the helm of Italian football for the former Fiorentina and Roma coach, the man who guided his country to the Euro 2012 final but failed to get out of the group stage (like England) at this summer's World Cup.

Who should replace him? Here are five candidates, three of which have Premier League experience...

1. Massimiliano Allegri

According to some bookmakers, the former AC Milan coach is the early favourite to replace Prandelli. The 46-year-old was replaced by Clarence Seedorf earlier this year (who was later replaced by Filippo Inzaghi) and has been without a job since leaving the club.

During his time at San Siro, Allegri won Serie A in his debut season but failed to replicate that success later down the line. He has previously stated his desire to manage the Italian national side.

2. Roberto Mancini

Just behind Allegri in the betting is former Manchester City boss Mancini. The 49-year-old recently left Galatasaray after a season in which he guided them to the knockout stages of the Champions League.

His time in Turkey was short-lived, though, while he was replaced at City by Manuel Pellegrini after a trophyless season at the Etihad Stadium. No one will forget Mancini's heroics the year before, however, with the Italian winning Man City their first Premier League title in dramatic circumstances.

As a player, Mancini never quite became a regular for the Italian side but has registered over 30 caps.

3. Roberto Di Matteo

A candidate not to have been mentioned so far - but why not? Di Matteo turned out for Italy as a player and his short-lived managerial career so far has seen him win both the FA Cup and Champions League with Chelsea.

The 44-year-old is not the most experienced option but his disciplined, defensive style should suit the Italian national side. Since leaving the Blues, Di Matteo says he has been 'overwhelmed' by offers to get back into football. Could a job in international management be the perfect chance?

4. Luciano Spalletti

Another supposed 'free-agent' to replace Prandelli, Spalletti would surely give the Italy job serious consideration. The former Roma boss recently left Zenit and is seen by many as a talented, capable coach.

A Russian title winner, as well as a two-time Coppa Italia winner, the 55-year-old has been out of work since being sacked from Zenit in March.

5. Paolo Di Canio

A very, very long shot, Di Canio has not been considered for the Italy job by anyone just yet. But, if any national team is charismatic or bold enough to make such an appointment, it's the Italians.

The former West Ham striker proved a success as manager of Swindon Town and then saved Sunderland from relegation after taking his first job in the Premier League. However, he was sacked soon after, having replaced the majority of the squad over the summer and publicly criticised several of his players.

The 45-year-old never played for the Italian senior side but did turn out for the Under-21s. And despite his widely condemned antics as Sunderland boss, Di Canio has often been linked with jobs due to his disciplined style of management. Could it possibly appeal to the Italian FA?

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