Gattuso's Pisa relegated despite Serie B's best defensive record

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Fourteen clean sheets weren’t enough to keep the former Milan midfielder's side in the second tier after a 4-1 defeat at home by Cittadella

Serie B side Pisa have been relegated to the Italian third tier, despite having the best defensive record in the league.

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Coached by Gennaro Gattuso, Pisa's demotion was confirmed on Monday night following a 4-1 defeat at home by Cittadella.

However, despite the heavy nature of that loss, Gattuso has still managed to produce the most resilient defence in the division after conceding only 33 goals in the 40 games played so far.

Top-of-the-table SPAL have conceded three more goals than Pisa this season, showcasing the bizarre situation Gattuso's side find themselves in.

A similar situation has only occurred once in the top four tiers of English football, in 1928, when Cardiff City were relegated from Division One having conceded two fewer goals than any other team

A record of 10 scoreless draws shows how difficult Pisa have found it to break opposition sides down this season, while the same number of 1-1 draws and 11 1-0 defeats have contributed to their defensive record.

Despite an impressive start to life in Serie B following promotion, with 12 points from their opening seven games, that success was short-lived, with Pisa winning only three of the next 33 games.

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Renowned for his resolute defending as a player, Gattuso set out his side to make them difficult to beat and, although opting for a 4-3-3 formation, defensively it worked.

The sale of Umberto Eusepi didn’t help Pisa in front of the opposition goal and just 23 goals scored have cost Gattuso's men, along with off-field problems which saw a four-point deduction imposed.

With relegation now confirmed, speculation over Gattuso's future begins, with reports suggesting the Italian wants to ply his trade overseas. 

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