Raimondas Žutautas has been appointed Lithuania's youngest ever national coach at the age of 37.
Žutautas, who has no previous head coaching experience, was the unanimous choice of the Lithuanian Football Federation executive committee to replace José Couceiro, who left the role in December. Couceiro was in charge for Lithuania's impressive 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign, which included defeats of Austria, Romania and Serbia. Žutautas, a former international midfielder, won the Lithuanian title with FK Romar and FK Inkara before departing for Russia's FC Alania Vladikavkaz and going on to claim league crowns and play in the UEFA Champions League with Maccabi Haifa FC and Panathinaikos FC.
Previously assistant coach to Itzhak Shum at Alania in 2005, Žutautas will be assisted by 1988 Olympic champion Arminas Narbekovas and FK Sūduva head coach Donatas Vencevičius. Žutautas said: "I am happy that my vision of the national team and their lineup concurs with the LFF's point of view. The psychological atmosphere is very important in the national team. This is the place where young talents should discover themselves."
On Sunday, Lithuania were drawn against holders Spain, the Czech Republic, Scotland and Liechtenstein in UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying. "We have to play against strong teams, but there are even stronger groups," Žutautas said. "We will be a tough nut to crack, especially at home. There are no invincible teams."
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