Skonto appoint ambitious Ashworth

Englishman Paul Ashworth will become the new coach of Latvian champions Skonto FC, succeeding Jurijs Andrejevs.

The 35-year-old has reportedly signed a two-and-a-half year contract, with Skonto official Vilnis Plaudis confirming that "there were a few candidates for the post but in the end the president, Guntis Indriksons, decided to pick Ashworth".

Ventspils success
Despite his relative youth, Ashworth has a big reputation in Latvian football having taken charge of FK Ventspils in 2001 and led the port city club to two successive second-place finishes. On both occasions, however, Ventspils let the title slip away and in the summer of 2003, Ashworth was dismissed.

Russian sojourn
He then steered modest FK Riga to sixth place in the 2004 final standings before a brief spell as director of sport at Russian Premier-Liga team FC Rostov earlier this summer. Skonto have been Latvian First Division champions for the past 14 seasons.