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The Italian coach was fired by the Viola for assaulting the Serbian in the dugout during last week's draw with Novara but he has since claimed that the striker insulted his mother

Fiorentina midfielder Valon Behrami has claimed former boss Delio Rossi lied in relation to his attack on Adem Ljajic during last Wednesday's clash with Novara.

After Ljajic had reacted with sarcastic praise for his coach's decision to substitute him just over half an hour into the game at the Artemio Franchi, Rossi tried to assault the forward in the Viola dugout.

The 51-year-old Rimini native claimed after his prompt dismissal that Ljajic had insulted his mother in Serbian, but Behrami has now backed up his team-mate's assertion that he did no such thing.

“I was sorry for the coach, because I’d known him at Lazio too,” the Switzerland international told reporters during a supporters' awards ceremony on Tuesday.

“We were all shaken up by the scene with Adem, but the day after Rossi said some things that weren’t true.

“Adem swore to us he never said those things to Rossi, plus the people on the bench didn’t hear anything either, so perhaps Rossi would’ve done better to keep quiet.

“You can emerge from even the biggest mistakes like a great man, but he didn’t do that. It’s a shame that he said things that were not true.

“Mind you, if we managed to make someone like Rossi lose it like that, then as a team we really must be bad!”

Behrami, though, has been one of the few positives in an otherwise dismal campaign for the Viola, who only made sure of their survival at the weekend.

However, despite the interest he has attracted from elsewhere in recent months, the former West Ham United man insists that he still has much more to give for the Viola cause.

“Our season was insufficient and so was mine," he argued. "Next year we begin again from scratch and will try to achieve something.

“I will stay; that is the intention for me and the club. However, I won’t sign a blank contract, as that’s not in my nature. I want to earn on the field everything I have."

Behrami, who has been capped 32 times by Switzerland, arrived in Florence from Upton Park during last year's January transfer window.

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