The Italian Almanac

Roberto Baggio

Italian Sport - September 16

Roberto Baggio is already "weighing up offers" to take an off-field role in the game he graced until last year.

"I'm out of the soccer world now and I'm doing other things I believe are more important," said the Italian soccer great, who was recently named goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

"But I've already received several offers which I'm weighing up .At the right time, I'll make what I think is the right choice," said the former 'Golden Ponytail', who is in Tokyo for the launch of a series of Japanese stamps showing highlights of his glittering career.

Baggio, 38, said he'd like to get into coaching in Italy but realised the process would have to be "gradual." In Italy coaches are licensed. They have to qualify for the job by going through the Italian soccer federation's coaching school.

Baggio recalled wryly that Dutch legend Marco Van Basten "started straight off as coach of the national team." He added: "The situation is different in Italy and I think a gradual process will be needed, starting from a club side."