Ever since Rafa Benitez left Newcastle, there has been one named continuously linked with taking the managerial job at St James’ Park. That of Italian madman Gennaro Gattuso. It is a name that will not go away, a sort of Bas Dost of the managerial links! But how would the former Milan midfielder cope with the pressures and responsibility of the Black & White job.

There is no doubt as a player Gattuso was a bit good. Playing in that Milan midfield with Pirlo was a joy to behold, and if he had been linked with Newcastle as a player, I would have dragged him over from Milan myself. However, as a manager would there be the same impetus to bring him to Tyneside?

There is no doubt of Gennaro’s passion, lets say, something the he exhibited as a player, and has certainly showed it in some of his press conferences since he. Has been a manager. He is certainly not one to take any nonsense from anyone, and with continual leaks from the Newcastle training ground, you feel he would stamp his authority and plug any leaks that there may be. You also feel if there were any training ground bust-ups he would be front and centre – there seems to be no in between with him.

He is still a relatively young manager, and will have fresh ideas of how to approach the game. Something that could suit this Newcastle side. I have said many times before, to successfully manage a modern squad you need a modern manager, and a doing away with the ‘Football Dinosaur’, and Gattuso certainly fits that bill. He would likely bring a level of respect to that Newcastle squad, something that was instilled in them in Milan, and any player not pulling their weight would be shipped out quicker than they could ask for a contract extension.

There is sometimes a case that a foreign manger coming in, may not fully understand the British game, and understand what some of the matches mean to its supporters. This would not be an issue for the Italian midfielder. Having played for both Rangers and Milan, he would have been in two of the most passionate derbies in European football, and would not have backed down. Its this fight and drive you would need to lead the way in Mike Ashley’s Newcastle.

His passion would be infectious, it would certainly get the fans onside. How the hierarchy would deal with him is another question! You get images of Lee Charnley cowering in his office, with the doors blocked, just trying to get away from Gattuso on one of his rampages! He certainly would not be a favourite of Barnes, Ashley or anyone else that ‘runs’ the club. He certainly has the personality that he would jump in the trenches with the supporters, and would be the first one over the top.

As far as his managerial record goes, it is not hard to find a manager with a better record than the one we are currently stuck with, and the former Napoli man certainly falls into that bracket. In his last two positions, with Napoli and Milan, he has just fallen short of qualifying for the Champions League, events in both cases that saw him lose his job at both top end Italian clubs.

In the grand scheme of things, losing your job at such high profile clubs because you missed out on Champions League is not a bad sword to fall on. However his career in the dugout hasn’t been that successful. He was sacked from his first two jobs, Sion and Palermo respectively. He then resigned from his next two. He resigned from OFI Crete due to lack of financial availability at the club. He would then resign from Serie B side Pisa, and would leave with the second best defence in the league, but the worst attack.

He would leave his last job under strange circumstances. Having taking the job at Fiorentina, he would leave just two weeks later. You get the feeling he does better at clubs have a superior squad, would he be able to hack it at Newcastle?

Yes we have some decent players, but would he be able to work with some of the less talented players of the squad. There is no doubt on paper he is a better manager than what we currently have. Would he be able to deal with financial constraints currently in place at St James’, or would he decide he doesn’t need it and walk away? Then we as fans would be back in the same place thinking “anyone but Steve Bruce or his ilk.”

I’m not sure Gattuso would be my first choice, but is certainly a step up from what we currently have! To sum him up you would have to use the words of the man himself…

“Sometimes maybe good, sometimes maybe shit!”

CARL RICHARDSON