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Football

Hagi back at Galatasaray as coach


Gheorghe Hagi
Hagi won four Turkish titles and the UEFA Cup with Galatasaray as a player.

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Istanbul (Turkey)

ISTANBUL, Turkey -- Turkish side Galatasaray have named former player Gheorghe Hagi as coach, following Fatih Terim's resignation.

Terim quit after his side's elimination from the UEFA Cup, but remained in charge until Saturday's 2-1 defeat by Rizespor.

"Everyone knows me well. They know I'm a very ambitious person who likes discipline," Hagi told a news conference.

"I'm going to continue with the same principles. My goal as a coach is to develop a team with a spirit for winning, a team that always thinks about winning."

Romanian legend Hagi, 39, joined the Istanbul giants in 1996, helping them win four Turkish titles as well as the UEFA Cup in 2000, shortly before his retirement as a player.

A former player of Real Madrid and Barcelona and a star of the 1994 World Cup, Hagi is considered the best foreign player ever to play in Turkey, according to Galatasaray's official Web site.

Hagi launched his coaching career soon after retiring when he was appointed Romanian national coach.

But he quit after six months as the team failed to qualify for the 2002 World Cup.

He returned to Turkey at the start of this season as coach at Bursaspor, but quit after the team made a poor start to the season.

Galatasaray are currently sixth in the Turkish first division, 19 points adrift of leaders and Istanbul archrivals Fenerbache.


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