Australian A.S Cittadella coach Roberto Venturato is still potentially one game away from coaching in Italy's Serie A next season, despite losing the first leg of the club's Serie B's playoffs 1-0 to Venezia.
In one of the under the radar yet most miraculous Aussie abroad stories this season, Atherton-born coach Roberto Venturato is one game away from coaching in Serie A.
His A.S Cittadella side has overcome one of the lowest - if not the lowest - budgets in Serie B this season and an almost entirely Italian local-based squad to make it to the final playoff stage.
Cittadella have beaten Monza 3-0 in the first leg of their Serie B semi-final playoff. Roberto Venturato has done a superb job on such a low budget. Enrico Baldini the man of the moment as he scored a hat-trick a big time to really step up after struggling for form this season.— Josh Bunting (@Buntingfootball) May 17, 2021
His Cittadella squad narrowly lost a tight encounter against Venezia this morning. Despite bossing 57% of possession, poor shooting hampered his side and they went down 1-0 to the visitors.
It all comes down to the final Serie B playoff second leg on 28 May at 5.30 am AEST.
Cittadella have done incredibly to make it this far, finishing the league in sixth position and scraping their way through the playoff semi-final round, including beating Mario Balotelli's Monza.
Cittadella with the smallest wage bill in the Serie B beat Monza 3-0 in the first leg of semi final playoffs. Cittadella’s wage bill is €3.3m/yr while Monza are paying over €20m/yr. Roberto Venturato is their coach from 2015 since they were in the Serie C. pic.twitter.com/v09PMV2LrB— Khaled Al Nouss (@khaledalnouss1) May 17, 2021
Venezia finished one spot above them in fifth.
The Queensland native, born to Italian parents, hasn't returned to Australia in many years but told the Sydney Morning Herald recently that he has high hopes for football down under.
I hope that maybe football can [grow] in Australia, that a lot of people go to see it, and soccer can become more important than the other sports," he said.
"Australia is a country where the possibilities are very, very important for soccer."