Rudi Garcia has taken over as head coach at Lyon despite his chequered history with Jean-Michael Aulas, the club’s president.
Lyon have confirmed the appointment of Rudi Garcia as head coach on a deal reportedly running until June 2021.
The former Lille, Roma and Marseille boss Rudi Garcia replaces Sylvinho at Lyon, who was sacked last week less than five months on from succeeding Bruno Genesio. “Olympique Lyonnais can announce the appointment of Rudi Garcia as the club’s new coach”, read an announcement on the French’s side official website.
Laurent Blanc and Jose Mourinho were linked to the role, but a recruitment panel headed up by sporting director Juninho Pernambucano and including Gerard Houllier “unanimously” agreed on Garcia.
The 55-year-old won a domestic double in charge of Lille in 2010-11 and led Marseille to the Europa League final two seasons ago. His appointment comes as something of a surprise given his chequered history with Lyon president Jean-Michael Aulas.
In April 2018, Aulas blasted the “arrogance” of the then-Marseille boss, who suggested Lyon got preferential treatment from referees, amid a battle between the clubs for Champions League qualification.
The arrival of the former Lille and Roma coach will be viewed as a setback for Lyon’s sporting director Juninho. The Brazilian handpicked his compatriot Sylvinho for the role.
“I chose Rudi Garcia because he is a fighter who, like us, has the ambition to win titles and succeed on the European stage. He is an experienced coach who has already won trophies. During my various interviews, I had a real football connection with him. We speak the same language in terms of tactics and style”, Juninho said.