MILAN (Reuters) – AC Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso parted company with the club on Tuesday, two days after his team narrowly missed out on qualifying for next season’s Champions League to extend their absence from the competition to six seasons.
Milan confirmed in a statement that the 41-year-old, a combative former midfielder who spent 13 seasons of his playing career at the club, had left with two years to run on his contract.
“AC Milan announces Gennaro Gattuso will leave his role as the club’s first team manager by mutual agreement with immediate effect,” said the statement.
“A true Rossoneri (red and black) legend, Gennaro stepped into the role during what was a difficult period for the club and has performed admirably, securing the club’s highest league points total since 2012/13.”
The club also announced that its sporting director, former Brazil international Leonardo Araujo, had resigned.
Gattuso led Milan to sixth place in Serie A last season and the Coppa Italia final, where they lost 4-0 to Juventus. This season they were beaten by Lazio in the Coppa Italia semi-finals and were knocked out of the Europa League in the group stage.
They finished fifth in Serie A, one point and one place outside the top four who qualified for the Champions League.
(Writing by Brian Homewood; Editing by Frances Kerry and David Holmes)