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The 57-year-old was delighted to sign a new deal to keep him at Stadio Friuli until the end of the 2016-17 season

Udinese have extended the contract of coach Francesco Guidolin until the end of the 2016-17 season.

The former Parma boss joined the Zebrette in 2010, and has led the club to top five finishes in each of his first three seasons, including a fifth-placed finish in 2012-13.

The 57-year-old has now been rewarded with a two-year extension to his current deal, and he admits he is relishing the prospect of continuing to help the club progress.

“I can only thank the club for this opportunity,” he told Udinese's official website.

“I’m proud to be able to continue managing this side, this new contract completes the extraordinary season we had last term. It’s also what I really wanted at this stage.

“Franco Collavino called me every day, but only for renewal. It is true that I was consulted by some big teams, but I am happy to have stayed here.

"Here there are ideas and plans. I don't see myself sitting on another bench in Italy."

Guidolin is determined to build on last season's successful campaign as they prepare for their Europa League qualifying clash against Kazakhstan’s Irtysh Pavlodar or Bosnia’s Siroki Brijeg on August 1.

“First we aim to reach 40 as quickly as possible. We will give everything to reach the Europa League group stage, as well. We know it won’t be easy, but we will use all our passion and heart to keep Udinese at a high level.”

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