Dutchman Van Marwijk named as new Saudi Arabia coach

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BRAUNSCHWEIG, GERMANY - FEBRUARY 15:  Head coach Bert van Marwijk of Hamburg during the press conference after the Bundesliga match between Eintracht Braunschweig and Hamburger SV at Eintracht Stadion on February 15, 2014 in Braunschweig, Germany.  (Photo by Oliver Hardt/Bongarts/Getty Images)

have appointed as their new head coach on a one-year deal, according to the country’s football federation (SAFA).

The 63-year-old tactician has been hired to replace former Saudi coach Faisal Al Badin, who took charge of the West Asia nation’s team in February.

“This is a great challenge,” he told VI on his appointment. “Saudi Arabia is already working on the qualification for the World Cup of 2018. I hope I can help the team with my experience further towards Russia.”

Van Marwijk previously led the Netherlands national team to the 2010 World Cup final, but left his job after his team lost all three games at the 2012 European Championship.

He has also managed clubs in the Dutch Eredivisie and German Bundesliga, where he was sacked from his last club Hamburger SV in 2014 after just 143 days in charge.

Van Marwijk is scheduled to arrive in Jeddah on Sunday and he will face his first task in the upcoming and 2019 Asian Cup campaign against Timor Leste on September 3.