Girondins de Bordeaux have unveiled former Leicester and Fiorentina boss Paulo Sousa as their new coach. The 48-year-old Portuguese has signed a three-year deal with the club currently ranked 13th in Ligue 1 Conforama.
As promised by Bordeaux's directors, the south-western club quickly found a replacement for Ricardo after the Brazilian was shown the door on 26 February; a little over a week later, new man Paulo Sousa has signed a three-year deal.
"We're convinced that Paulo Sousa will make our fans very happy when they come to the stadium to see them play and that he will achieve the ambitious objectives we have set out for him," declared Girondins de Bordeaux president Joe Da Grosa.
A free agent since October, when he left Chinese club Tianjin Quanjian, Sousa had been linked in the Italian press with a move to AS Roma, but ended up opting for Ligue 1 Conforama and the ambitious new project being put in place by Bordeaux's new owners.
"My role at Bordeaux, as has been the case at every club I have coached, will consist of creating and implementing a philosophy and an identity in our play that reflects the history and influences the future of the club," detailed Sousa.
Third Portuguese coach of the season
After Uruguayan boss Gustavo Poyet was shown the door in August, the duo of Ricardo and Eric Bédouet followed before Sousa became the club's third coach of the season. He is also the third Portuguese coach to be appointed in Ligue 1 Conforama this season, after Miguel Cardoso (FC Nantes) and Leonardo Jardim (AS Monaco).
A former Portugal international as a player, Sousa won consecutive UEFA Champions League titles with Juventus (1996) and Borussia Dortmund (1997) before turning to coaching in 2005, three years after hanging up the boots. In the last 14 years, he has coached Portugal U16, Queens Park Rangers (ENG), Swansea (ENG), Leicester (ENG), Videoton (HUN), Maccabi Tel Aviv (ISR), FC Basel (SUI), Fiorentina (ITA) and Tianjin Quanjian (CHI). After winning league titles in Israel (2014) and Switzerland (2015), the Portuguese is now trying his hand in a seventh different league.