This Serie A manager just cycled across Italy after his team’s escape from relegation

Back in April, with his Crotone side sitting five points from safety in Serie A following their first away win of the season, Davide Nicola made a promise to his team: if they survived relegation, he’d cycle the length of Italy.

Eight games after that 2-1 win at Chievo, Nicola’s team beat Lazio 3-1 on the last day of the season, surviving by two points.

Crotone, a team from the south of Italy that won promotion to Serie A in 2016, had just 14 points from their first 29 matches, before 20 points from their final nine saw them safe against all odds.

A vital 2-1 win against Inter Milan followed, before important draws against AC Milan and Joe Hart’s Torino kept the momentum going.

However, a 3-0 defeat against Juventus in Crotone’s penultimate league game meant that Nicola, 44, needed results to go his way on the final day of the season – relegated Palermo gave them a helping hand by beating Empoli 2-1.

So the manager, at Crotone for less than a year, set off from Crotone on his bike and arrived in his home town of Vigone nine days later, having covered around 1300 kilometres.

F.C. Crotone

Alle porte di Asti: arrivo in volata. Indovinate chi è il primo…??? PS – Domani ultima tappa intermedia a Torino: arrivo previsto allo stadio Filadelfia ore 15.00 / 15.30. Chi di voi ci sarà…???

But the ride took on extra meaning. In 2014 Nicola’s 14-year-old son Alessandro was killed in a road accident while riding his bike.

In an open letter to his late son, ESPN reported that Nicola wrote: “Your energy gave me the strength to keep fighting and pursuing the impossible.”

The manager finished his ride across Italy in the town where the crash occurred: “With the help of many people, we have also attracted the attention of many people to the question of safety on the…

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