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Chinese Super League

Azkals hire Sven-Goran Eriksson to take Philippines to ‘next level’ starting with Suzuki Cup opener against Singapore

  • Former England and Ivory Coast manager replaces Terry Butcher
  • First coaching role since leaving Shenzhen in China League One in 2017
PUBLISHED : Sunday, 28 October, 2018, 12:45pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 28 October, 2018, 12:45pm

Former England and Ivory Coast manager Sven-Goran Eriksson has been named as the new head coach of the Philippines national team ahead of their AFF Suzuki Cup opener against Singapore next month.

The Swede replaces Terry Butcher who left the role in August, just two months into his contract and without taking charge of a single game.

Eriksson has not managed since leaving Shenzhen FC in the Chinese second tier in June last year but he brings a wealth of experience that Philippines general manager Dan Palami said can “help the team reach the next level”.

That experience includes taking England to Euro 2004 and the World Cup in 2006 before taking Ivory Coast to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

He has also managed English Premier League sides Manchester City and Leicester City, Roma and Sampdoria in Italy, and had stints at Guangzhou R&F and Shanghai SIPG in the Chinese Super League.

The 70-year-old has signed a six-month contract which includes the AFF Suzuki Cup in November and the AFC Asian Cup in January.

The South East Asian tournament features home and away games with the Philippines hosting Singapore on November 13 in Eriksson’s first match in charge.

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Games against East Timor, holders Thailand and Indonesia follow as the Azkals look to better reaching the semi-final in 2014.

The knockout stages take place in December.

The biggest names in Eriksson’s squad are Cardiff City goalkeeper Neil Etheridge and the holder of the record for most caps and most goals Phil Younghusband.

The Azkals are in a group with South Korea, China and Kyrgyzstan in the Asian Cup in the United Arab Emirates in January.

Scott Cooper led the team during the interim and will stay on as assistant to the Swede who will reportedly arrive in the coming days ahead of the training camp on November 3.