Unprofessional Foul


June 28, 2011

**Updated** The Great Viola Glasses Caper

When Inter Milan failed to land some of its early targets in the search for a new manager, many eyes turned to Fiorentina’s Serbian gaffer, Sinisa Mihajlovic.

There were even whispers in the Italian press that an agreement between the Nerazzurri and Mihajlovic (who played for multiple Serie A sides, including Inter) had already been reached. A date for the announcement was even reported by several outlets.

But throughout the whole process, Mihajlovic reaffirmed his desire to stay with La Viola. He admitted there had been contact with the Milanese giants but stopped short of saying how close he was to signing, claiming yet again his total focus was on Fiorentina.

Unofficial police sketch of the alleged thief.

And what does such dedication to a club get you in football these days?

It gets your favorite pair of sunglasses stolen.

It seems that during a press conference for Fiorentina’s media outlet on Thursday, called for the purpose of yet again reiterating that the Serbian will still be at the helm next season, some culprit pilfered the manager’s expensive sunglasses (Italian) which the club also describe as having “affective value”.

The club announced the theft on their official website today (Italian), and the notice throws another added wrinkle into the story.

Fiorentina claims to have video evidence of the theft, and is offering il ladro the chance to return the glasses anonymously before making the contents of the videotape public.

This is seriously the exact strategy we used to do at the youth center where I worked when something got stolen. Make a big fuss about announcing the theft, be sure whoever has sticky fingers hears that they will be found out, threaten consequences, and then graciously offer the option to return whatever it was (hat, pokemon card, sunglasses with sentimental value, etc.) without penalty.

Without fail, the item in question was on my desk by the end of the afternoon every single time.

Whether or not Fiorentina can pull off the same results remains to be seen. And while this does seem like much to do about nothing, the support Mihajlovic is getting from the club here could be seen as a testament to the “honesty and fairness” he sees in La Viola which he cites as key reasons for his staying put.

They’d do well to keep him happy as well as he deserves great credit for righting a floundering, injury-riddled campaign to achieve a respectable 9th place finish in Serie A this term.

La Viola will hope to spring back up into the European places during the upcoming season, a task that will no doubt be more challenging if their manager has the sun in his eyes.


It worked!

Corriere dello Sport reports that Mihajlovic’s precious shades have been returned.

True to their word, the club have not released the name of the thief, though it’s unclear whether whoever returned them was actually the one with the sticky fingers.

So, “crisis” averted.

Man, I cannot wait for the season to start again.

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