Hagi given the Galatasary job as Koeman rules out 'small club' Boro vacancy

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The Independent Football

Galatasary yesterday appointed Gheorghe Hagi as their new coach for a second spell at the Super Lig club. The former Romania international, who played for the club for five years and coached them between 2004 and 2005, replaces Frank Rijkaard, who left the club on Wednesday.

Hagi, 45, is yet to reach the heights as a coach he hit as a player. Since leaving Gala, he has had short stints in charge of Timisoara and Steaua Bucharest. Former Blackburn midfielder Tugay has been appointed as Hagi's assistant.

Gala have had a disappointing start to the season, with fans calling for Rijkaard's departure after a second successive league defeat – 4-2 at home to Ankaragucu.

Hagi takes over with the team ninth in the standings having picked up only 12 points from their opening eight games. They also failed to reach the group stage of the Europa League, losing their two-legged play-off on away goals to Karpaty Lviv in August. Hagi played at three World Cups with Romania, for whom he earned 125 caps. In a successful playing career he also enjoyed spells with Real Madrid, Brescia and Barcelona after coming to prominence in his home country.

Ronald Koeman has revealed he wants to manage in England – but he is not interested in the Middlesbrough job. The former Holland sweeper, whose last coaching post was an ill-fated seven-month stint in charge of AZ Alkmaar which ended in December last year, claimed he could not see any potential at the Teesside club.

Koeman, who has also coached Valencia and PSV Eindhoven, told the NuSport newspaper: "I would love to work in England. But preferably at the highest level or at a club with potential. I do not see that at Middlesbrough."

Boro are looking for a new boss following the resignation of Gordon Strachan on Monday.

Claude Puel is closer to saving his job as Lyons coach, and a fifth straight win at Arles on Sunday in the French league will take some more pressure off him following a vitriolic campaign among the club's fans for his dismissal.

Things had been so bad for Puel that even club president Jean-Michel Aulas gave him until the end of October to turn the situation around when fans demanded his firing, even hanging hateful banners off highway bridges and in Lyons' city centre.

But Wednesday's 2-0 victory over Benfica in the Champions League shows that Puel may be turning the situation around. Even the players, often unhappy with his disciplinarian methods, are beginning to enjoy themselves and Puel says, "We're starting to see some smiling faces again."