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Coleman to save Coventry from relegation

last updated Wednesday 20th February 2008, 8:00 AM
Brede Hangeland
Brede Hangeland
Chris Coleman today pledged to stave off relegation following his appointment as Coventry's new manager.

The 37-year-old, who recently returned to England after a brief six-month spell in charge of Spanish side Real Sociedad, arrives at the Ricoh Arena with Coventry in 20th position, hovering just four points above the relegation zone.

"It's a new challenge, a wonderful opportunity for me and everything here is in place to move forward," said Coleman, who has signed a 3½-year contract with the Sky Blues.

"It's not ideal the position we're in at the minute and we've got to improve to get out of this position but I'm very confident we can go forward - I'm sure of that. I'm under no illusions how difficult the job will be. The most important thing for me was where the club wanted to be in three or four years' time."

The former Wales international defender was in charge at Craven Cottage for four years before being sacked last April and replaces Iain Dowie, who was dismissed last week because, acording to new chairman Ray Ranson, he "did not share the same ideals for the club".

Ranson, who took over the club two months ago, said: "Chris is a progressive young manager with excellent coaching credentials and has a real desire to deliver success for our club.

"I have been flattered by the number of top-class coaches and managers who have shown an interest in managing Coventry City, but Chris was always our No1 target.

I am looking forward to working with him we share the same passion for football and how a club should be managed, I have no doubt that he will help to take this great club forward."

A frozen pitch and fog has put paid to Coventry's match against Sheffield Wednesday this evening meaning Coleman's first match in charge will be against Leicester City on Saturday.

Source Ben McFarland at The Guardian
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