Boca Juniors legend Martin Palermo named new manager at Pachuca
Boca Juniors legend Martin Palermo has been named head coach of Liga MX club Pachuca on a one-year deal.
Palermo replaces Spaniard Pako Ayestaran and arrived in Mexico on Tuesday to sign his contract and begin work.
"It's an interesting place, very competitive football and coming into a big club like Pachuca is a challenge for me," 45-year-old Palermo told reporters on arrival in Mexico City.
Palermo said that Pachuca president Jesus Martinez originally contacted him with a view to him working at Pachuca's sister club Everton de Vina del Mar in Chile, before the position at Pachuca opened up after Ayestaran was removed from his job following the 3-0 loss last Saturday to Club America.
"The [Pachuca] squad is very complete, there are a wide range of players and now I'll get to know them and help them to get their confidence back," said Palermo, who has previously managed Arsenal and Godoy Cruz in Argentina, as well as Union Espanola in Chile.
Palermo is best known for his spells at Boca Juniors, as well as his three penalty misses in one game at the 1999 Copa America against Colombia.
The former Argentina striker has been out of work since leaving Union Espanola last November, but sees Pachuca as a crucial breakthrough in his career.
"Of the three clubs that I've managed, this is the most important step because of the prestigiousness of the team and because I'm coming to a very competitive league," added Palermo.
Former Pachuca coach Ayestaran feels he was unfairly dismissed, following a run of eight home Liga MX games without defeat.
"We leave completely proud and satisfied with what we have done," said Ayestaran Monday in a press conference. "We can't be in agreement (with the decision), but we have to accept it."
Palermo takes over a side with one win from its first three games of the 2018 Clausura and without a playoff appearance in over two years.