Roy Hodgson named manager of West Brom

West Brom have confirmed the appointment of Roy Hodgson as head coach on a contract until June 2012.

The 63-year-old, who parted company with Liverpool five weeks ago after an ill-fated six-month stint at Anfield, succeeds Roberto di Matteo in the Albion hotseat.

Di Matteo was relieved of his duties and placed on gardening leave on Sunday following a 3-0 defeat to Manchester City - the Baggies' 13th defeat in 18 games in all competitions.

Last weekend's defeat left Albion only two points clear of the Barclays Premier League relegation zone.

First-team coach Michael Appleton was handed the reins on a caretaker basis while a replacement was sought, and will remain in charge for tomorrow's game against fellow strugglers West Ham.

A club statement today read: "West Bromwich Albion are delighted to announce they have appointed Roy Hodgson as the club's new head coach.

"The 63-year-old former Inter Milan, Switzerland, Fulham and Liverpool boss has this morning committed himself to the club until June 2012.

"Hodgson was voted manager of the year by the League Managers' Association last season after guiding Fulham to the Europa League final.

"Michael Appleton, who was appointed caretaker head coach on Sunday after Roberto Di Matteo was relieved of his duties, will remain in charge for the West Ham game.

"The club are now channelling all of their efforts into supporting Appleton, his assistants Keith Downing and Dean Kiely and the players as they prepare for tomorrow's vital game."

Hodgson's appointment comes just over a month after his departure from Anfield - and he will not have to wait long to face his former club, with Kenny Dalglish's Reds due at The Hawthorns on April 2.

Liverpool's owners New England Sports Ventures put an end to Hodgson's miserable spell on Merseyside on January 8 and immediately installed club legend Dalglish to take over in the interim.

Although the Reds' statement at the time said Hodgson's departure was by mutual consent there is no doubt the club's American owners pulled the trigger - especially as less than a fortnight ago earlier the manager insisted he had no intention of resigning.

Former Blackburn boss Sam Allardyce ruled himself out of contention for the vacancy at The Hawthorns, but ex-Newcastle boss Chris Hughton had been widely tipped as a strong candidate while Steve McClaren, former Albion skipper Derek McInnes and ex-West Brom player Martin Jol were also linked with the role.

Appleton - at 35 the youngest man ever to be put in charge of a Premier League team - had also spoken of his hopes of seizing the chance to earn himself the job on a permanent basis.

But Albion have instead opted to give Hodgson a swift return to top-flight management.

Hodgson's name had been linked with England in the summer in the wake of the national team's woeful performance at the World Cup under Fabio Capello.

The former Inter Milan and Switzerland boss's stock may have fallen due to his disappointing spell at Liverpool but he has proven himself in England before.

He took over at Fulham in December 2007 and led the club to survival that season before a seventh-place finish in 2008/09 secured the Cottagers a place in Europe. An unlikely run to the Europa League final followed, where they were beaten by Atletico Madrid, with Hodgson leaving for Anfield soon after.