Manager Roberto De Zerbi to leave Brighton at end of season

Italian's last game at helm will be against Manchester United on Sunday before he departs 'by mutual agreement'

Brighton head coach Roberto De Zerbi will leave his post after Sunday's home match against Manchester United. PA
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Roberto De Zerbi will quit as manager of Brighton and Hove Albion after their final game of the season against Manchester United, the Premier League club announced on Saturday.

The Seagulls, who currently sit 10th in the table, face Erik ten Hag's side at the Amex Stadium in the final round of fixtures on Sunday.

The Italian joined the south coast team in September 2022 on a four-year contract after a short spell as coach of Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk.

He had previously managed Sassuolo in Italy's Serie A for three seasons and, before that, several other Italian clubs including Foggia and Palermo.

But on Saturday, Brighton chairman Tony Bloom said: "We have mutually agreed to end Roberto's contract at a time that suits both parties allowing us the earliest opportunity to plan for next season, and Roberto plenty of time to consider his next move and his future,

"Roberto has given us two excellent seasons of service in which he has led the club to new heights, not least our first ever European campaign which will live long in the memory of Albion fans."

Brighton finished sixth in the Premier League last season, the club’s highest ever top-flight finish. That finish gave them European qualification for the first time in their history.

In the Europa League this season, Brighton recorded victories Ajax, Marseille and AEK Athens to top their group before being knocked out in the last 16 by Roma.

"I am sure our fans will give Roberto and his staff a wonderful and fully deserved send off at the Amex before, during and after tomorrow's match," Bloom added.

"In the meantime, I'd like to thank Roberto and his staff for all their hard work in the past two seasons. They all leave our club on good terms and with our very best wishes for the future."

De Zerbi, who arrived at Brighton after Graham Potter departed for Chelsea, said: "We have agreed to end my time at Brighton so that the club and I can continue to work in the way that suits each of us best, following our own ideas and visions, as well as our work and human values.

"Leaving now provides me with time to take a break before deciding on my future plans.

"I am very sad to be leaving Brighton, but I am very proud of what my players and staff have achieved with the support of everyone at the club and our amazing fans in the past two historical seasons."

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Updated: May 18, 2024, 3:49 PM