Gennaro Gattuso, seen here in an argument with then-Tottenham Hotspur first-team coach Joe Jordan in 2011, will take charge of AC Milan. Photo: Reuters

MILAN – AC Milan sacked coach Vincenzo Montella on Monday and immediately announced that he would be replaced by their fiery former midfielder Gennaro Gattuso.

Montella was dismissed one day after a goalless home draw with Torino left Milan, who spent more than €200 million in the close season, seventh in Serie A with 20 points from 14 games, 18 behind leaders Napoli.

Montella had been in charge since the start of last season when he led Milan, 18-times Italian champions, to sixth place in the standings.

Gattuso, 39, was known as one of Italy’s toughest defensive midfielders in his playing days.

He began coaching with Swiss club Sion in 2013 and had a short spell in charge of Serie B side Palermo.

After coaching OFI Crete, he returned to Italy to lead Pisa to promotion from the third tier in 2016. Gattuso was appointed Milan’s youth team coach before this season.