Coleman signs on as boss of Sociedad

June 28, 2007

SAN SEBASTIAN, June 28 (Segunda Liga) - Chris Coleman will be presented to the Spanish media next week after it was confirmed the former Fulham boss will coach Spanish side Real Sociedad next season.

Sociedad President Maria De La Pena announced the arrival of the Welshman at a press conference at the club's Anoeta stadium on Thursday.

'He will bring freshness and new ideas and the main aim will obviously be to return to the Primera Liga,' she said.

Real Sociedad were relegated last season for the first time in 40 years and will make wholesale changes for the coming campaign.

A new board has been drafted in and must be ratified on Saturday before Coleman's arrival can be officially confirmed.

The 37-year-old Welshman should then be unveiled in a press conference next week alongside new sporting director Salva Iriarte, a former Sociedad coach.

Both will be handed three-year contracts.

Current Wales coach John Toshack, who has coached the Basque giants on three occasions, was instrumental in the appointment of Coleman.

Toshack, who still has a house in San Sebastian, rejected the club's offer of a role as sporting director, but was quick to recommend his countryman for the position of coach.

Coleman's representative, Alan Smith, hailed Toshack's influence.

'They've really pushed the boat out,' Smith said.

'John Toshack has recommended Chris - he's been very positive. Toshack is still a major hero out there and it's a magnificent club.

'When you see the training facilities, it doesn't get much better.'

Toshack was in San Sebastian to welcome Coleman and familiarise his friend with the city this week.

Coleman arrived on Tuesday morning and was given a guided tour of the area by Toshack, who later accompanied him on a tour of the club's training ground in Zubieta.

Coleman spent four and a half years at Fulham, but was dismissed towards the end of last season following a poor run of results.

The former Wales defender will now take up a new challenge and is excited by the prospect of working in Spain.

'Coaching abroad improves you because it allows you to see a different kind of football and a different culture,' he said.