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Friday, July 17, 1998 Published at 16:34 GMT 17:34 UK

Sport: Football

Celtic appoints new coach

Venglos will work in a consultant capacity until he gets a work permit

Celtic have appointed Dr Jozef Venglos as their new head coach on a three-year contract.

The former Aston Villa manager is the successor to Wim Jansen who took Celtic to their first Scottish league title in a decade last season, but resigned just two days later.

Venglos, known as "The Doctor", took over at Villa Park from Graham Taylor in 1990, but was replaced a year later by Ron Atkinson.

[ image: Celtic hope Venglos will help groom his successor]
Celtic hope Venglos will help groom his successor
The 62-year-old Slovakian, unveiled at a news conference at Parkhead on Friday, will initially have to operate at the club in a consultancy capacity until he obtains a work permit.

Venglos, currently coaching advisor to FIFA and technical director to Slovan Bratislava, was the first foreign manager in top-flight English football.

However his spell in Britain was memorable for its lack of success, when the Villa only just avoided relegation in the 1990-91 season.

Celtic were dealt a blow on Thursday when former France coach Gerard Houllier opted to go to Liverpool as joint team manager rather than travel to Parkhead.

Celtic managing director Fergus McCann said: "Jozef Venglos has a wealth of experience and knowledge of coaching which is difficult to match in world football.

"He knows what it takes to win at the highest level, winning leagues and cups at national level, European, and international level as well as taking Czechoslovakia to World Cup finals in Italia 90.

"The process we have gone through has involved talking to many people. It has been an in-depth search and at the end of it we have an intelligent man with a mature attitude and a knowledge of playing and coaching at the highest level."

Create a dynasty

Part of Venglos' brief will be to identify and groom his successor as he will be of pensionable age when his contract expires.

McCann said: "I believe that Jozef will not only take the first team forward but will ensure the entire coaching set-up throughout the club has a strong foundation for many years to come."

[ image: Wim Jansen resigned two days after winning the championship]
Wim Jansen resigned two days after winning the championship
Venglos, who has also coached the national teams of Australia, Malaysia, Oman, Slovakia and Czechoslovakia, said: "I could not resist the offer of the opportunity to coach a club that is embedded in world soccer's history.

"The chance to work with 13 international players in one of Europe's finest football arenas with 60,000 supporters and so much potential still to achieve is an opportunity and challenge I relish."

The appointment of Venglos has angered some supporters and around 200 assembled outside the Parkhead offices with some chanting "Brown Out," referring to general manager Jock Brown.

But fans head Peter Rafferty urged his fellow followers to be patient and to give Venglos time.

The president of the Amalgamation of Registered Celtic Supporters' Clubs said: "Venglos is a bit of a mystery man. It is not a name we expected.

"Overall it is a surprise move on the club's part and I think that is how the supporters may view it.

"But we must give him a chance to show what he can do. That's in everyone's best interests."

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