Igoris Pankratjevas has been named Lithuania coach on a permanent basis after impressing during his three-month spell as caretaker.
Pankratjevas, 48, served as assistant to Csaba László during much of Lithuania's unsuccessful 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign before taking over in September as interim coach following the Hungarian's departure. He kicked off his reign with a 2-0 defeat of neighbours Latvia, before a 1-0 loss to Bosnia and Herzegovina and a 1-1 draw with Moldova.
"Pankratjevas was the best candidate because he knows the national team well enough to continue the previous work straight away," read a statement from the Lithuanian Football Federation (LFF). "His ability in the job was tested at the end of last cycle."
Best known in Lithuania for his spell as a midfielder for the successful FK Žalgiris Vilnius side of the 1980s, Pankratjevas also played for clubs in Russia, Ukraine and Germany.
As a coach, he has held the reins at a number of leading Lithuanian clubs including FBK Kaunas, FK Atlantas and Žalgiris, winning the Lithuanian Cup twice, and also had a short stint in charge of Lithuania's Under-21 side. In 2010, he was named Lithuanian coach of the year for leading promoted Žalgiris to third place in the league.
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