Ralf Rangnick has returned for a second spell as coach of UEFA Champions League quarter-finalists FC Schalke 04 after agreeing a deal until 2014.
The 52-year-old has replaced Felix Magath, who was sacked on Wednesday, and takes the helm at the Gelsenkirchen outfit where he was previously in charge between September 2004 and December 2005. His new squad sit tenth in the Bundesliga but have a UEFA Champions League quarter-final looming on 5/6 and 12/13 April, with their opponents to be revealed by Friday's draw.
During his first spell, Rangnick steered the team to second place in the 2004/05 Bundesliga as well as the German Cup final, which Schalke lost 2-1 to FC Bayern München. When he later announced he would not be renewing his contract, which was due to expire in 2006, the club decided to release him six months early.
Rangnick – who had earlier occupied the hot seats at SSV Ulm 1846, VfB Stuttgart and Hannover 96 – went on to spend almost five years as coach of TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, a post he left in January. His first game back as Schalke boss will be a league match at FC St Pauli on 1 April, with assistant Seppo Eichkorn holding the reins for Sunday's trip to Bayer 04 Leverkusen.
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