De Zerbi to leave Brighton after Man Utd game

Head coach Roberto de Zerbi will leave Brighton after Sunday’s final Premier League game at home to Manchester United.

Chairman Tony Bloom said the Premier League club and De Zerbi had «mutually agreed» that the Italian would leave.

Former Shakhtar Donetsk coach De Zerbi (44) joined the Seagulls in September 2022 on a four-year contract.

Brighton finished sixth last season, with the club’s highest-ever finish securing European qualification for the first time in their history.

“Roberto gave us two outstanding seasons of service in which he took the club to new heights, not least our first ever European campaign, which will live long in the memories of Albion fans.

«We have mutually agreed to terminate Roberto’s contract at a time that suits both parties, which will allow us to plan for next season as soon as possible and give Roberto plenty of time to consider his next move and his future,» Bloom said.

One of the managers rumored to be on Brighton’s shortlist to replace De Zerbi is likely to be Kieran McKenna, who just won promotion to the Premier League with Ipswich Town.

Brighton have enjoyed Europa League victories over Ajax, Marseille and AEK Athens this season and topped their group before being knocked out in the round of 16 by Roma.

They are tenth in the Premier League ahead of Sunday’s final game and cannot finish higher in the table.

“I’m sure our fans will give Robert and his team a great and well-deserved send-off at the Amex before, during and after tomorrow’s game.

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«In the meantime, I’d like to thank Robert and his team for all their hard work over the past two seasons.» They all leave our club on good terms and with best wishes for the future,” added Bloom.

De Zerbi was appointed after Graham Potter left for Chelsea and Brighton have since sold Leandro Trossard, Alexis Mac Allister, Robert Sanchez and Moises Caicedo for a combined fee of over £200m.

«We have agreed to end my time at Brighton so that we can continue to work with the club in a way that suits each of us best, according to our own ideas and visions, as well as our work and human values.»

“Leaving now gives me time to pause before deciding on my future plans.

«I am very sad to be leaving Brighton but very proud of what my players and staff have achieved with the support of everyone at the club and our amazing fans over the last two historic seasons,» De Zerbi said.

Seven members of De Zerbi’s coaching staff will also leave, but first-team coach Andrew Crofts and goalkeeping coach Stern will remain at the club.

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