Former France captain Patrick Vieira on Sunday took over as coach of Strasbourg in the French Ligue 1 on a three-year contract, the US-owned club announced.

Vieira, 47, succeeds Frederic Antonetti, who was dismissed early last week after Strasbourg finished 15th in Ligue 1, two places and five points above the relegation zone.

“I welcome Patrick Vieira, whom I know from the French national team; I am very happy to welcome him to Strasbourg,”

“He corresponds to the profile we were looking for: a manager with international experience, and who also has a good knowledge of Ligue 1 and its young players.”

Said Marc Keller, the Strasbourg president and a former France midfielder in a statement on the club website.

The Alsace club is under new ownership, with The BlueCo consortium, led by Chelsea owner Todd Boehly and US-based Clearlake Capital, buying a majority stake on June 22.

Vieira played 107 times for France captaining his country 21 times and winning the World Cup in 1998 and the Euros in 2000. A midfielder he played for AC Milan, Arsenal, Juventus, Inter and finally Manchester City, where he started his coaching career.

He has been head coach at New York City FC, Nice and Crystal Palace.

He said he was “particularly happy” to take over at Strasbourg.

“I know the history and the identity of this club, the fervour it arouses, the importance it has for its region, which is a place of football and passion,”

“It is exciting as a coach to be able to build something while relying on the values that have defined the strength of the club.”

Said Vieira.

Vieira had been without a club since he was fired by Palace in March.

In his first season he led the club to 12th place in 2021-2022 but was sacked this spring with the club just above the relegation places and on a 12-game winless run.

Palace had failed to manage a shot on target in each of his last three Premier League games, the first instance of that happening since the statistic was first recorded in 2003-04.

Source: AFP

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