Arrentine Menotti takes over at Mexico's Veracruz

February 17, 2006

MEXICO CITY, Feb 17 (Reuters) - Veteran Argentine coach Cesar Luis Menotti has agreed to take charge of struggling Veracruz, a director of the Mexican club said.

Menotti, the chain-smoking coach who steered Argentina to victory in the 1978 World Cup, accepted the club's offer on Thursday.

'The negotiations are already concluded and the only thing that is delaying his arrival is a family matter,' Veracruz vice-president Guillermo Mendizabal said in a statement.

Menotti, 67, also coached Argentina in the 1982 World Cup and has managed Mexico's national team.

The list of clubs he has coached include Boca Juniors, River Plate, Uruguay's Penarol, Italian side Sampdoria and Spain's Barcelona.

Menotti, who led modest Huracan to the Argentine league title in 1973, is an exponent of attacking football and was credited with revolutionising the Argentine game in the 1970s.

His magic touch has waned in recent years, and he has taken long breaks from the game. Menotti lasted just seven months at Sampdoria in 1997 and five months at Argentina's Rosario Central in 2002.

He held his most recent post at Argentine side Independiente in 2005 but complained that he was undermined by club politics.

Coach Alfredo Tena resigned from the Veracruz job last weekend after they started Mexico's 2006 Clausura championship by losing five games in a row.