Former Glasgow Rangers boss Pedro Caixinha has secured a return to Saudi Arabia as boss of Al Shabab on a two-year contract.
Caixinha, 49, was named in the early hours of Sunday morning as replacement for Luis Garcia after the Spaniard, according to Arriyadiyah, declined to extend his contract for the remainder of the coronavirus-interrupted 2019/20 campaign.
This represents the first head coach role in the Kingdom for the former Al Hilal and national team assistant, under long-term mentor Jose Peseiro. Shabab sit eighth in the Saudi Professional League, ahead of August 5’s restart at third-placed Al Wehda.
“The Al Shabab management, led by chairman Khalid Al Baltan, formally signed with the Portuguese coach Pedro Caixinha to lead the first team for two seasons,” a statement read on the club’s official Twitter account about the tactician who endured an infamous 229-day stint at Ibrox in 2017.
“Al Shabab wished the Portuguese coach success in his mission and that his time here will be full of achievements, God willing. Mr Caixinha will arrive with his assistants to the capital, Riyadh, on Sunday with the help of God Almighty.”
A boost for Caixinha is the prospect of selecting Argentina centre midfielder Ever Banega when 2020/21 gets under way. The 32-year-old inked a lucrative deal in January to join them once his attachment to Sevilla expired this summer.
Caixinha’s last post was at Mexico’s Cruz Azul from December 2017-September 2019. He beat Monterrey to lift the Copa MX and was defeated by Club America in the Apertura final in 2018, but resigned after only two victories were notched in the outfit’s opening eight league games of the next season.
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