Athletic appoint former Argentina coach Bielsa

Former Argentina and Chile coach Marcelo Bielsa has assumed the reins at Athletic Club on a one-year deal and immediately promised a positive approach from his team.

Marcelo Bielsa took charge of Chile's 2010 FIFA World Cup campaign
Marcelo Bielsa took charge of Chile's 2010 FIFA World Cup campaign ©Getty Images

Athletic Club have chosen former Argentina and Chile coach Marcelo Bielsa to lead them into the UEFA Europa League play-offs.

Bielsa, 55, has agreed to take over at San Mamés for a single season following the expiry of predecessor Joaquín Caparrós's contract. "There will be no excuses for not trying to win every game," said Bielsa, who had resigned from the Chile job in February. "The important things are to make sure we are in the opposition half more than in our own, and to have more time in possession than in thinking about recovering the ball." Caparrós's four-year stay as Athletic boss ended after they finished sixth in the 2010/11 Spanish Liga.

Bielsa's previous club posts include spells at CA Newell's Old Boys and CA Vélez Sársfield in his native Argentina and at Club Atlas and Club América in Mexico. He has also been in charge of the Argentinian and Chilean national teams; during his six years in the former role he won the 2004 Olympic football tournament, while his Chile side reached the last 16 of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. His only coaching experience in European football was a six-match tenure at RCD Espanyol in 1998.

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