Mihajlovic leaves Serbia for Sampdoria

The 44-year-old has left his post with the national team some 18 months after taking charge in order to return to Serie A

Sinisa Mihajlovic has announced that he will take the reins at Sampdoria after stepping down from his role as Serbia head coach.

The 44-year-old had been linked with his former club, for whom he made over 100 appearances as a player, ever since they parted company with Delio Rossi earlier this month and he has now confirmed he will return to Italy for a fourth coaching stint.

"In recent days questions were raised over my future, because my contract was due to expire at the end of the month," Mihajlovic told reporters.

"After talks with the federation I decided that I will no longer be the coach of Serbia. I make this decision with much regret, because I set up a new generation and a new team for Serbia who have bright prospects.

"I accepted the invitation from Sampdoria, where I played for four years."

Mihajlovic went on to suggest he would have left Serbia regardless of the approach from Sampdoria.

"I want to emphasise that Sampdoria's call had little influence on my decision as I left because federation president Tomislav Karadzic and secretary Zoran Lakovic could not guarantee they would stay in their roles.

"I leave the door open to maybe one day come back and be coach of Serbia again."

Sampdoria currently lie 18th in Serie A, having won just two games this season.