ROME (AP) — Lazio hired Maurizio Sarri as its new coach on Wednesday, shortly after the Italian club strongly hinted at the appointment with a series of cryptic posts on social media.

“Lazio announces that Maurizio Sarri is the new coach of the first-team squad,” the Serie A club said in a one-line statement on its website.

Italian media reported that the former Juventus coach signed a two-year contract at Lazio, with the option for an additional season.

“Lazio has chosen a coach whose standing is in line with the need to consolidate and grow, in Italy and in Europe, the leading position that the club, its fans and the team deserve to have,” Lazio president Claudio Lotito said.

Earlier Wednesday, Lazio had simply posted an emoji of a cigarette on twitter and then wrote in Italian “who has a light?” It then posted a collage of pictures including a bank and a hand holding a cigarette.

Sarri, who is a notorious smoker, is a former banker.

The 62-year-old Sarri replaces Simone Inzaghi, who left Lazio last week after five years to take charge of newly crowned Serie A champion Inter Milan following Antonio Conte’s departure.

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Inzaghi led Lazio to the Italian Cup title in 2019 as well as two Italian Super Cups.

He also steered the club back into the Champions League in 2020, for the first time in 12 years, after Lazio mounted an unexpected title challenge in Serie A.

Sarri has been out of a job since being fired from Juventus last year despite leading the Bianconeri to a ninth successive title in his one season in charge. He has also coached Chelsea and Napoli.

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