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Van Basten named FIFA technical director

The Dutchman has been hired by FIFA president Gianni Infantino to help raise coaching standards. The ex-striker announced he was quitting as Netherlands assistant coach last month.

One of the most technically gifted players of his generation has been appointed by FIFA as "chief officer for technical development".

The job is mainly aimed at improving the level of coaching across the game but he will also be responsible for football technology innovation and refereeing standards.

Van Basten, who scored one of the most memorable goals in history to help the Netherlands beat the Soviet Union in the final of Euro '88, will work with former AC Milan team-mate Zvonimir Boban.

The Croatian has also been hired by FIFA as deputy secretary general.

The 51-year-old Van Basten coached the Netherlands, Ajax, Heerenveen and AZ Alkmaar after his playing career was cut short by injury. His last job was back in the Dutch set-up as assistant manager, but he announced he would quit in August.

mm (ap)