Clarence Seedorf hangs up boots to become AC Milan coach | inside World Soccer

Botafogo midfielder Clarence Seedorf confirmed on Tuesday that he has retired from professional football and will become the new coach of AC Milan.

Clarence Seedorf gestures during his farewell press conference at Brazilian club Botafogo
Clarence Seedorf gestures during his farewell press conference at Brazilian club Botafogo

Photo: AGIF

The 37-year-old has been increasingly linked with a return to the San Siro following the sacking of Massimiliano Allegri on Monday.

Allegri paid the price for a dismal season for Milan, who are currently eleventh in Serie A and were beaten 4-3 by newly promoted Sassuolo on Sunday.

"I am here to announce that I will retire from playing after 22 years," Seedorf told a press conference in Rio de Janeiro.

"It has been a difficult decision, but I am satisfied with what I have achieved in my career and what I have done here at Botafogo.

"I am happy because I leave the team with qualification to the Libertadores and I leave an improved club, especially for their mentality and team spirit.

"This experience of the last year and a half has made me grow up a lot and will help me in my next step, as coach of Milan, who have hired me in a manner both elegant and correct."

Seedorf, who won two Scudetti and two Champions League titles as a player at Milan, conceded that the offer to return to the club was just too good to turn down.

The Surinam-born star added: "The sacking of Allegri was decisive in my decision making.

"Galliani called me just yesterday (Monday). I could not say no to Milan after spending 10 years with the Rossoneri.

"I like challenges, and coaching Milan will be another challenge in my career.

"The contract I signed is for two and a half years. I'm delighted with the opportunity the club have given me and I'm very motivated to do well."

Clarence Seedorf had a successful 10-year playing career at AC Milan
Clarence Seedorf had a successful 10-year playing career at AC Milan

Photo: Getty Images

Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti was Seedorf's boss at Milan and he is convinced that the former Dutch international can be a success at the Italian giants.

He told reporters: "I know Clarence very well, he was always a player who showed huge personality.

"I'm sure that he has the knowledge and ability to do anything in the world of football.

"Now he's facing a new experience in an environment he knows very well, that is important.

"A lack of experience? It's not the first time Milan have made this type of decision. It happened before with Arrigo Sacchi and Fabio Capello, and on both occasions things went very well.

"Personally I wish Milan all the best regarding Seedorf."

As a Milan player, Seedorf was a figurehead, making more than 400 appearances for one of the most successful clubs in Italy.

"He is a great player, he has plenty of experience having won everything. It would be really interesting to see him in the role of coach," ex-Milan star George Weah told Milannews.it

"Even as a player he has been able to motivate and drag the group. He may be the right coach for this Milan of young players."


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