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Wednesday, August 17, 2022

PSG name Ancelotti as new coach

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Former England captain David Beckham

Italian Carlo Ancelotti was on Friday named the new coach of Paris Saint-Germain on a two-and-a-half year deal, but former England captain David Beckham has still not committed to the big-spending Qatar-backed French club.

The 52-year-old former AC Milan and Chelsea boss takes over from Antoine Kombouare, who stepped down earlier Friday, and his first competitive game will be a French Cup last-64 tie away to Brittany amateur outfit Locmine on January 8.

Ancelotti is now in place to fly out to the Middle East with the first-team squad on Sunday for a four-day winter training camp in Qatar and Dubai.

It has been reported that Ancelotti, twice a Champions League winner in his time with Milan, would become the best-paid coach in the history of the French game with an annual salary of between six and seven million euros ($7.8m-$9m).

Ancelotti – who won the Champions League twice both as a player and as a coach with AC Milan – announced former France international midfielder Claude Makelele, who played at PSG till retiring at the end of last season, would be his assistant.

“I thought of Claude Makelele because he was a great player, who has great experience, huge charisma, and is a personality,” said Ancelotti, who revealed that Giovanni Mauro who was the fitness coach with him at Milan and Chelsea would also be coming with him.

“He knows French football inside out, and has the ability to communicate with the players.”

The club left it late to confirm the sacking of Kombouare, a former player who has been in the dug-out since the summer of 2009.

“After two years during which he carried out his duties as PSG head coach with passion, Antoine Kombouare leaves Paris Saint-Germain as from today,” the Parisian club said in a statement shortly before unveiling Ancelotti.

Kombouare, 48, thanked “all the people who offered him support over these last days”.

“I leave Paris Saint-Germain with a sense of unfinished business but with the feeling of having given everything.”

Beckham’s agent on Friday denied media reports that the former Manchester United star – whose main remaining ambition is to play for the British football team in next year’s London Olympics – had signed for the Parisian club.

“There is no agreement with PSG at this time, an offer does not make a contract, we continue to hold negotiations with a number of clubs,” 19Management said in a statement released by the SEMP public relations company.

“No decision has been made and we do not expect one at the moment.”

PSG’s sporting director Leonardo also said that there had been no agreement between the two parties and ultimately Beckham would decide what was best for him and his family.

“With Beckham, it is normal that there is huge press coverage, but nothing has been done between us and him,” said the former Brazil international and AC Milan coach.

“We have a very good rapport with him, Carlo (Ancelotti) also has. I don’t know what effect that may have.

“He has always said that his choice would be a family one. We have studied the matter, but there are details outside of the professional side of things that will decide matters.

“Today he is in Los Angeles, he is reflecting on his personal life.

“I don’t know what he is going to do, there are details (which can intervene) for someone who is already living in Los Angeles.”

The BBC too cast doubt on Beckham moving to Paris when they said later on Friday they understood – without citing the source – that he would stay in Los Angeles because his family are happy there and don’t fancy moving.

©2011 AFP

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