Rudi Garcia appointed new Roma boss

The former Lille man has agreed to join the Serie A club on a two-year deal and is the side's third manager in as many years
By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent

Rudi Garcia has been appointed as Roma's new manager.

The former Lille coach met with senior officials of the American-owned outfit in New York earlier this week to tie up the agreement and has signed a two-year deal with the Serie A club.

The 49-year-old is Roma’s third permanent head coach in three years, following Luis Enrique and Zdenek Zeman.

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It is believed that Garcia’s contract is worth €1.5million-a-year (£1.3m) and has an option for a third year.

“We are very excited and confident that Rudi Garcia is the right coach for AS Roma. He is a proven winner with a great football mind who we believe fits in perfectly with our vision for the future,” said Roma president James Pallotta.

The 49-year-old has been personally cherry-picked by Roma sporting director Walter Sabbatini following an impressive five-year stint at Lille. The former midfielder was chosen as France’s coach of the year in 2011 after steering Lille to a league and cup double.

Roma held talks with former France coach Laurent Blanc earlier this month but moved for Garcia after being impressed with his man-management and communicative skills.

The early contenders for the post, that had been filled in the final months of last season by caretaker Aurelio Andreazzoli, had been Massimo Allegri and Walter Mazzarri, but Allegri agreed to remain at AC Milan for another year and Mazzari left Napoli for Inter.

Senior Roma officials are under pressure from the club owners to make a successful appointment following the disastrous appointments of Enrique, who had been chosen by former general manager Franco Baldini, and Zeman.

Zeman’s authoritarian approach was not well received by senior players last season, particularly vice-captain Daniele De Rossi, who is on the target list of Chelsea.

“We welcome Rudi Garcia to AS Roma.  He will continue to develop our existing talent base while giving us the best opportunity to win now. We are looking forward to this season more than ever,” said the club's CEO Italo Zanzi.