Reggina have appointed Luigi De Canio as their new coach within hours of sacking Bortolo Mutti, followinglast night’s 3-0 home defeat by Lazio.

De Canio, who hasÿsigned a one-year contract, was delighted.

“I have had other chances to sign for Reggina during my career but now I’m here and I’m extremely happy.”

“I want to stress that I have accepted Reggina’s offer with enthusiasm. We will have to fight and work hard to avoid relegation but I’m confident that we can manage. This team and their fans are the pride of the people from the South of Italy”.

Reggina’s president Lillo Foti added: “We believe that De Canio is the right man for our team. We are sure that he can work as well as he did at Udinese in Serie A.”ÿ

Mutti became the 2002-03 Serie A season’s second managerial casualty, after the dismissal last week of Tornio’s Gianfranco Camolese. Mutti’s coaching staff, including assistants Mauro De Cicco and Giovanbattista Piacentini, were allso sacked.

Last night’s defeat to Lazio was Reggina’s fifth in eight games, leaving the newly-promoted side third from bottom in the division, just a point abbove bottom-placed Atalanta.

The 45-year-old De Canio has experience of managing in Serie A. He spent two years in charge of Udinese before quitting to join Napoli, where he was sacked for failing to lead the club backk to the top flight.