Hamburg's Stevens off to PSV

Huub Stevens will leave Hamburger SV next summer to take charge of PSV Eindhoven, who have confirmed the short-term appointment of coach Sef Vergoossen.

Huub Stevens will realise his dream of becoming PSV Eindhoven coach after announcing this afternoon that he will return to his native Netherlands once his contract with Hamburger SV expires in the summer.

Spectacular finish
The 53-year-old replaced the sacked Thomas Doll with Hamburg bottom of the Bundesliga in February and promptly oversaw a spectacular turnaround which resulted in HSV finishing in seventh position and among the European places. With the club continuing to ride high both in Germany and in the UEFA Cup this season, the board were reluctant to lose Stevens. "We tried everything to make him stay but we fully understand the decision which was taken because of his family," said Hamburg director Bernd Hoffmann.

Previous experience
PSV have confirmed that Stevens will sign a two-year deal as a permanent replacement for Ronald Koeman, who recently left for Valencia CF. The coach said: "The decision was made for private and personal reasons. The move will enable me to be closer to my family, especially my wife." Stevens was on the books of PSV between 1975 and 1993, winning the UEFA Cup in 1978. He also coached the team for six games when Bobby Robson was ill. Stevens still has a home in Acht, which is close to PSV's De Herdgang training ground.

Vergoossen comes in
Meanwhile, PSV have revealed that caretaker boss Jan Wouters will resume his assistant coach's role in January with Sef Vergoossen coming in to lead the side. The 60-year-old Vergoossen will join from Nagoya Grampus Eight in Japan along with assistant Dwight Lodeweges. When Stevens arrives next summer, Vergoossen will stand down and work on developing the club's younger players. He had originally planned to retire in December but was happy to put that on hold as PSV came calling.

Smooth negotiations
"The negotiations with Stevens went very smoothly," said PSV general director Jan Reker. "We spoke a few times on the telephone and once face to face. He is a real PSV man and we are looking forward to his arrival. Until then, Vergoossen is someone who is really suited to take on the job of head coach."