Jardim set for Monaco job after leaving Sporting Lisbon

The 39-year-old coach is set to take charge of the heavy-spending Ligue 1 club, who parted company with former Chelsea manager Claudio Ranieri earlier on Monday
Leonardo Jardim has stepped down as Sporting Lisbon coach amid reports that the Portuguese is set to take charge of Monaco.

Jardim only arrived in Lisbon from Olympiakos last summer but, after a stellar debut season at the Estadio Jose Alvalade in which he led a young side to second place in the Primeira Liga, the 39-year-old was heavily linked with a move to the Stade Louis II.

That speculation only intensified after Monaco parted company with Claudio Ranieri on Monday but Jardim refused to confirm his next destination at a press conference later in the day, preferring instead to express his gratitude to Sporting for agreeing to let him leave half way through a two-year contract.

"I have to thank the president [Bruno da Carvalho] for having faith in me," he stated. "It was with great pride that worked here in Lisbon and there are no antagonistic feelings.

"On the one hand, there is a feeling of some sadness at leaving a club that has given me a lot and a group of players that have done such good work. On the other hand, this is another step in my career."

Monaco vice-president Vadim Vasilyev refused to be drawn on the identity of the club's incoming coach after announcing Ranieri's exit but it has been reported that Jardim has already agreed a two-year contract with Les Rouges-et-Blancs.

"I can't confirm the name of the new coach as we are still negotiating some details," the Russian stated. "We want someone who can bring an attacking way of play that will be enjoyed by our fans."

Jardim, who was born in Venezuela to Portuguese parents, started his coaching career as an assistant boss at Camacha at the age of 27. He has since had spells at Chaves, Beira-Mar and Braga as well as Olympiakos and Sporting.