Ayestaran named Valencia coach till 2018


MADRID: Former Liverpool assistant manager Pako Ayestaran was confirmed as Valencia coach on a permanent basis on a two-year deal on Tuesday.

Ayestaran, who was assistant to Rafael Benitez at Anfield between 2004 and 2007, took over at Valencia after England coach Gary Neville was sacked in March.

“Pako Ayestaran has been named coach of Valencia until June 30, 2018,” the club said in a statement.

Ayestaran had been incorporated into Neville’s coaching staff to help the under-fire former Manchester United captain in February.

However, the 53-year-old then guided Valencia away from the relegation zone with three wins in their last eight La Liga games to finish 12th in the table when put in temporary charge after Neville managed just three league wins in his ill-fated fourth-month reign.

Ayestaran was also Benitez’s assistant during a glorious period for Valencia that included two league titles and a UEFA Cup between 2001 and 2004.