The Russian Footbal Union (RFU) appointed former England coach Fabio Capello as new national coach on Monday. The Russians hope the Italian-born Capello can resurrect the team after its struggles at Euro 2012.
"Today we decided to appoint Capello as our national team's new manager," RFU deputy president Nikita Simonyan told ITAR-TASS news agency. "We expect him to come to Moscow in the nearest future to finalize the details of his contract and sign it," Simonyan said, adding he expected the deal to be completed by "Wednesday or Thursday."
The exact financial details of the deal have not been disclosed, but the Sport Express daily reported last week that Capello had been offered an annual salary of up to seven million euros ($8.5 million). Reuters reported that Russian media had said the deal was expected to be for two years, with the possibility of a two-year extension.
The 66-year-old Capello, who quit as England boss in February, told Italian news agency ANSA he was happy to coach Russia. "I am happy, if contract negotiations go well as I believe they will, it will be a wonderful adventure, as Russia is a great country," he said.
Capello will succeed Dutchman Dick Advocaat, who had announced ahead of the Euro 2012 he would step down as Russia's coach following the tournament. Russia was eliminated in the group stage.
Capello, whose nickname is "Don Fabio," had previously coached such clubs as AC Milan, Roma, Juventus and Real Madrid before becoming England manager in 2007. Other names rumored to be on Russia's managerial wish-list were ex-Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp, former Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez, former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola, Italian veteran Marcello Lippi, and Argentinian coach Marcelo Bielsa.
Capello had been England's boss for five years before resigning in February after a falling out with Football Association chiefs. The FA had stripped John Terry of the captain's armband ahead of his racism trial, and Capello quit in protest. Under Capello, England advanced to the round of 16 at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and qualified for Euro 2012.
bm/mz (AFP, dpa, Reuters)