Skibbe, who has previously coached BV Borussia Dortmund, said: "Bayer is a huge chance and a huge challenge for me. We have a very good squad and the players must not settle for anything less than a finish that will earn us European football next season."
In signing a contract until 2007, the 40-year-old will be reunited with Rudi Völler. Skibbe was Völler's assistant with the Germany national team from 2000-04 and helped lead his country to the 2002 FIFA World Cup. However, after a disappointing UEFA EURO 2004™ campaign, Völler stepped down and Skibbe became head of the German Football Association's youth department.
Skibbe now replaces Völler after the Leverkusen sporting director's brief spell as caretaker coach. Völler guided the side to two wins following the departure of Klaus Augenthaler last month. He said: "I obviously know Michael Skibbe very well and I have complete trust in his ability. We needed a coach who can bring the team forward tactically and I am sure we have found the right man."
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