Italy's performance at the 2010 World Cup was extremely poor, drawing 1–1 with both Paraguay and New Zealand before losing 3–2 to Slovakia and finishing bottom of the group.[17] Lippi resigned after the Slovakia defeat.

Lippi recently signed a contract to return to Guangzhou and replace Luiz-Felipe Scolari as manager in January, which would see him earn £18million net per year.

China have appointed the World Cup-winning manager Marcello Lippi as their new coach. The 68-year-old guided Italy to the 2006 World Cup title and was more recently in charge of Guangzhou Evergrande.

After winning the World Cup, Lippi stated that this was his "most satisfying moment as a coach", even after winning the Intercontinental Cup and the UEFA Champions League with Juventus.[15]

But he will need to make the game of football interesting to the 1.5billion people in the country.

The Italian won the Champions League in Juventus’ first-ever season in 1995-96 — and lead the Bianconeri to the three finals.

He retired from coaching after winning a third straight league title with Chinese side Guangzhou Evergrande in 2014.

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

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Born in Viareggio, in northern Tuscany, Lippi began his professional career as a defender in 1969. He spent most of his playing years with Sampdoria, where he played consecutively from 1969 to 1978, except for a year on loan at Savona. In 1979, he joined Pistoiese, being part of the Arancioni 's promotion to Serie A. He finished his playing career with Lucchese.

In Canton, there is a new residential area being built — complete with small lakes and football pitches — called ‘Lippi City’.

Three days after the final, Lippi did not renew his expiring contract with the Italian Football Federation (FIGC), and left his office as coach of Italy. He was succeeded by Roberto Donadoni.[16] Under the management of Donadoni, Italy was eliminated at UEFA Euro 2008 at the quarter-final stage, prompting Donadoni's dismissal. On 26 June 2008, Lippi was re-appointed as coach of Italy.[1]

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On 22 October 2016, Lippi was appointed manager of the China national football team.[22]

The Champions League and World Cup-winning manager has become a hero in the Asian country after his exploits with Guangzhou Evergrande.

After five highly successful seasons at Juventus, Lippi moved to Internazionale in 1999, leading the club to a fourth-place finish in the league and the 2000 Coppa Italia Final,[8] though he was sacked after suffering a disappointing defeat in the first match-day of the 2000–01 Serie A season, having previously also been faced with significant criticism due to his poor results in his previous season with the Nerazzurri.[2]

Tuttosport are reporting that Marcello Lippi is in the frame to become the new coach of the Chinese national team (Reuters)Reuters

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It is the latest move by China to become more competitive. Under Xi Jinping, a fan of the sport, China is striving to become a superpower, but its foray into football has been a failure.

Lippi replaces Gao Hongbo, who resigned after China’s defeat to Uzbekistan on 11 October, and will be presented at a press conference in Beijing on 28 October.

The long-term aim is to host the 2030 World Cup and bring the number of participants up to 50million.

In March 2007, Lippi managed a Europe XI team who played Manchester United in a UEFA Celebration Match, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Rome and the 50th year of Manchester United's participation in European competitions. His team lost 4–3 at Old Trafford.

For the 2010 World Cup, Lippi selected mostly veterans of the victorious 2006 squad, omitting younger players such as Mario Balotelli and Giuseppe Rossi, in addition to notable players such as Antonio Cassano. It was announced on 30 May 2010 that after the World Cup, Lippi would step down as national coach, to be succeeded by Cesare Prandelli.

Lippi, 68, had two spells in charge of the Italian national team and won five Serie A titles and the Champions League with Juventus.

He won three successive Chinese Super League titles, an FA Cup and the AFC Champions League in 2013.

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They are bottom of Group A in Asia with one point from four games.

Marcello Lippi

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The men’s team have qualified for only one World Cup, in 2002 and did not score a single goal. The women’s team finished as runners-up in the 1999 World Cup.

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The Italian replaces Gao Hongbo, who resigned earlier this month after a 2-0 defeat in Uzbekistan dealt a further blow to China's slim hopes of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

And Corriere dello Sport report he is due to fly to Beijing to weigh up a massive offer from the Chinese FA.

The Chinese FA are hoping for around 20,000 participants by next year.

He was recently working for the Italian FA, but is willing to change his plans for a third time — however, it is not in his style to take two jobs at the same time.

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In 2013, there were 6,000 football centres opened nationwide and it was introduced on to the primary school curriculum a year later.

He was also manager of Inter Milan when they made Christian Vieri the first £30m+ player in 1999 — while his career highlight came in 2006.

Champions League and World Cup winner deciding whether to take over national team or return to former club

Lippi won the World Cup with Italy in Germany — beating the hosts and then France in a dramatic final.