Fabio Capello is officially the head coach of the Russian national team. On Thursday, the Italian and his agent settled all the formalities before putting a signature on a two-year contract with the Russian Football Union.
“I’m pleased to finally present Fabio Capello as the new team Russia head coach,” Russian Football Union’s acting president, Nikita Simonyan, told a news conference. “We signed a great professional. His credo is to win. He is going to spend most of his time in Russia. The deal is struck so we’ve already started the work.”
“It’s a great honor for me to be at the helm of the Russian national team,” the Italian said, adding that this is a team with “huge potential”.
The two-year agreement, with an option to prolong it for another couple of years, will reportedly bring the Italian around $12mln, which makes him the highest-paid football coach in the world.
The 66 year old will take charge in time for Russia's friendly against Ivory Coast next month, before World Cup qualifiers against Northern Ireland and Israel in September.
Capello is one of the most decorated coaches, after winning five Serie A titles with AC Milan and Roma as well as two Spanish crowns with Real Madrid and the UEFA Champions League with AC Milan.
He worked as England manager from December 2008 to February 2012. With him at the helm England successfully qualified to the 2010 FIFA World Cup, where they were knocked out in the playoffs, and the 2012 European Championship. On 8 February this year, he resigned after a dispute with the Football Association.
Wednesday’s deal puts an end to a month-long vacuum in Russian football. Former head coach Dick Advocaat left the team to join PSV Eindhoven after leading Arshavin and Co. to a Group stage blunder at the Euro 2012.
It was followed by the resignation of the football union’s president, Sergey Fursenko. The post still remains vacant.