On 9 January 2001, the 101st anniversary of Lazio's founding, manager Sven-Göran Eriksson gave the club a surprise present--his resignation.
Arriving in Rome from Serie A rival Sampdoria in 1997, the Swede quickly established himself as one of Lazio's most successful managers by winning the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italiana in 1998, while taking the club to that season's UEFA Cup Final. Although Lazio lost the final to Inter, Eriksson delivered European glory the following season, winning both the 1999 Cup Winner's Cup and 1999 UEFA Super Cup and finishing as runners-up to Milan in Serie A.
In the 1999-2000 season, Eriksson again brought success, delivering Lazio's second-ever Serie A title as part of a domestic treble that included repeat victories in the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italiana.
In October 2000, England approached Eriksson to replace departing national team manager Kevin Keegan. He agreed, on the condition he could make the switch at the end of the season. But that January, he decided not to wait any longer. He resigned from Lazio on the 9th and that month became the first-ever foreign manager of England.