Newcastle United’s former first-team coach Fabio Pecchia left Newcastle last summer to become head coach at Serie B club Hellas Verona and he has managed to get them promoted back to Serie A in his very first season as manager.
So Rafa is not only doing great things for Newcastle and making his players better, but he seems to be able to help his own coaches be successful along the way.
Verona finished second top of Serie B with 74 points from their 42 games and were 4 points behind the Champions SPAL 2013.
Fabio Pecchia – former Newcastle coach now at Hellas Verona
It was not dissimilar to what Rafa did at Newcastle, because Hellas Verona were relegated only last year from Serie A finishing in bottom place with 28 points from their 38 games.
Fabio was with Rafa for three years and joined him when the Newcastle manager was head coach at Napoli and the Italian followed Benitez to Real Madrid and Newcastle United.
And Rafa Benitez seems just delighted for his former colleague and has issued his congratulations to Fabio via his own web-site.
“When we won the Championship with Newcastle this season, we thought it’s a great sporting year and now to confirm it our great friends Fabio Pecchia and Filippo Fusco have guided Hellas Verona to promotion in Italy.”
“We send our warm congratulations to two wonderful professionals and dear friends.”
“Also to Hellas and the city of Verona – you are all back in the elite.”
When Rafa arrived at Newcastle he said that Fabio was destined to become a manager in his own right and Fabio spent only four months with Rafa on Tyneside before departing to manage Hellas Verona.
This is what Fabio Pecchia said on Sky Italia about Newcastle and Rafa:
“I’m happy for the promotion of Newcastle.” “I’m very happy for Rafa Benitez, as he took our team back into the top division.”
“I wish to achieve great things as he has done and the fact that they fell into the Championship and but then he guided the Bianconeri back shows his humility and humanity.”
It will be interesting to see how Verona do next year, but former Newcastle coach Ian Cathro has not fared as well at Hearts who he joined in January – not yet anyway.