Gattuso set to retire from playing in summer

The 35-year-old midfielder says he is planning to call it a day on his playing career this summer and reveals his plans to begin coaching full-time
Former AC Milan and Italy legend Gennaro Gattuso says he will retire from the game in the summer in order to focus on his coaching ambitions.

The 35-year-old is currently at Swiss outfit FC Sion, but the veteran has said he will call time on an illustrious 18-year playing career in June.

In February this year, the World Cup winner was appointed player/coach for the Swiss club following a series of poor results and, speaking to Tuttusport, Gattuso revealed the decision to quit is linked with an ambition to embark on a coaching career.

"I think I will have another match but it will be my swan song. In June I will finally hang up my boots and dedicate myself to my new career," he said.

And having played under some of the game's most decorated figures, Gattuso believes he is well-equipped to make a successful transition from life on the pitch to life in the dugout.

"Let's just say that I feel I have the ambition and determination to succeed as a coach. I have been compared with Antonio Conte and it is an honour to be compared with him. I would love to enjoy the same success he has had as a coach," he added.

"There are many similarities between us and we both had, among other things, [Marcello] Lippi and [Carlo] Ancelotti as coaches. They were my teachers."

Meanwhile, Gattuso turned his attentions to former club Milan as they prepare to face Barcelona in the last-16 stage of the Champions League on Tuesday.

Gattuso said: "I will sit in front of the TV and savour the big game alongside some of my former classmates. Prediction? I would take a 3-1 defeat."

FC Sion, who currently sit fourth in the Swiss Super League, travel to the capital on Sunday for a clash with Young Boys.