One of the funnest parts about being a Fiorentina fan is watching the manager strut out onto the touchline. Over the past decade, the Viola have had some of the best-dressed coaches in world football. That’s hardly surprising, of course; Florence is one of the most elegant cities in Italy, which puts it in the running for most elegant cities in the world. And Fiorentina is famous for its unmistakable purple strip, one of the most instantly recognizable around. You’d have to be thick indeed, then, to think that the team’s manager wouldn’t want to uphold the fashion-forward traditions of the club and the town.
The last five men to manage Fiorentina each brought a distinct personal flair to the technical area, though. Let’s run through them, shall we (we’re skipping Vincenzo Guerini, whose sartorial excellence is matched only by his winning record as a manager, because he only handled a single match; also skipping Delio Rossi, who wore nice suits butt was otherwise pretty unremarkable in terms of clothing)?
1. Cesare Prandelli
San Cesare may have been the most versatile of the managers on this list in terms of wardrobe. While his penchant for scarves, turtlenecks, and the occasional cardigan buttoned to the neck are all unimpeachable, the garment that we’ll forever associate with him is the puffy jacket, preferably with a big ol’ scarf. Way before Arsene Wenger lost his battle with this sort of thing, Prandelli rocked it better than any college sophomore settling in for a late autumn study session.
2. Siniša Mihajlović
The Serbian hardman lacked Prandelli’s flair, it’s true, but his dedication to that comically large scarf made up for any limitations, especially when combined with his “angry dad starts fight at youth match” attitude. And he could add a pretty good purple sweater vest to the ensemble.
3. Vincenzo Montella
Cousin Vinny made a direct 180 from Siniša’s disciplinarian stance, and he symbolized it with how he dressed. Sure, sometimes he’d go for a thee-piece suit or a scarf, but he was more likely to show up in a puffy vest and baseball cap. His signature look at Fiorentina, though, has to be the one he saved for rainy matches, when he dressed like a kid whose mom buys all his clothes and has an eye for undeniably sensible, yet undeniably dorky, all-weather gear. Extra credit for some spectacular headgear.
4. Paulo Sousa
Say what you will the way his teams performed on the pitch, but you can’t deny that the Portuguese was as suave as can be. If Fiorentina were a kids’ movie, Sousa would be the smooth older guy who takes the hero’s single mom out for a date early on, only for the rambunctious protagonist to ruin the whole thing. So suave. So classy. So turtleneck.
5. Stefano Pioli
While the current boss’ greatest contribution to the illustrious tradition of fashion in the Tuscan capital is probably his knack for fungibility amongst the entire staff, he unveiled an exquisite new look against Chievo Verona. The all-black three-piece suit was sleek and threatening to start with, but when he removed the jacket to showcase the purple back to the waistcoat, we just about swooned, even if he could have maybe cut the vest a little bit better. As we’ve seen previously, he’s a man of unsuspected depths.
You can only choose one of them, though. So which of these five is the best-dressed Fiorentina manager?
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