In a huge coup for the Western Sydney Wanderers, the club have announced the signing of former German international Markus Babbel as the clubs new head coach.
Babbel, who played 51 times for Germany, has inked a three-year deal to be the Wanderers' new boss.
The ex-Bayern Munich and Liverpool defender comes to the club with a rich coaching pedigree following successful spells at FC Luzern in Switzerland - where he coached Caltex Socceroo and former Wanderers striker Tomi Juric - and in Germany with Hertha Berlin, Hoffenheim and Stuttgart.
A talented footballer, Babbel’s transition into coaching has been a successful one including winning promotion to the Bundesliga with Hertha Berlin and qualifying for Champions League football with Stuttgart.
Most recently the head coach of Swiss Super League side FC Luzern, Babbel comes to Australia with a good knowledge of Australian players having also previously coached Nikita Rukavytsya in Berlin.
Babbel enjoyed huge success as a player winning three Bundesliga titles with Bayern as well as an FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup with Liverpool, while he was part of the German team that prevailed at EURO 96.
Wanderers Chairman Paul Lederer said that Babbel was the right man to lead the Wanderers into the next phase of their growth.
“Today we have made a statement about our future and I am very proud to announce Markus Babbel as our new Head Coach,” said Lederer.
“In the next 18-months we will have our new training facility finished, our new stadium open and our club ready to take another giant.
“Having a coach like Markus involved with this club will make us a force in this league as we strive to win trophies, return to the AFC Champions League and make a statement not only in Australia but internationally as a football club.”
Babbel takes the reins from Josep Gombau, who was released by the Wanderers at the conclusion of the Hyundai A-League 2017/18 Season.
The Wanderers failed to qualify for the Finals Series, ending the campaign in seventh spot after a final round 3-2 loss to Adelaide United.