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Mixu Paatelainen is named as the new Kilmarnock manager

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Paatelainen joy at Killie appointment

By John Barnes

Mixu Paatelainen has joined Kilmarnock as their new manager, agreeing a two-year deal with an option for a third.

The 43-year-old former Finland international has been out of football for over a year, having left his post at Hibernian in May 2009.

"I was desperate to get back and I look forward to being at Kilmarnock," said Paatelainen. "I missed the training ground and the adrenaline.

"There is scope to improve the squad. Not too much, just a little bit."

The Ayrshire club narrowly avoided relegation last season and have lost several players under freedom of contract, including top scorer Kevin Kyle, Simon Ford, David Fernandez and Gavin Skelton.

Jimmy Calderwood decided against continuing in the Killie dugout since he was not happy with the proposed player budget and the prospect of losing first team coach Sandy Clark to further financial cuts.

And Paatelainen is well aware he will be dealing with limited funds as the club struggle with debts in the region of £11m.

"I hope to bring in a couple of players," he added. "I haven't spoken to any of the players and I don't intend to until 5 July.

"I know it's a big task and difficult. The SPL is very tight but I believe with hard work you can create a little luck."

Prior to his 16-month spell in charge at Easter Road, Paatelainen had managed TPS in his homeland and Cowdenbeath.

As a player, Paatelainen turned out for a host of clubs, including Dundee United, Aberdeen, Bolton and Wolves.

Kilmarnock have yet to reveal who will assist their new manager in his backroom team.

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Rugby Park chairman Michael Johnston cast his net wide in the search for a successor to Calderwood, who announced his decision not to return at the end of May.

German World Cup winner Thomas Haessler withdrew his application on family grounds, while compensation ruled out a move for first target Blackburn coach Steve Kean.

Ex-St Mirren manager Gus MacPherson had been spoken to, along with Alex Rae, Lawrie McKinna and former Hearts bosses John Robertson and Csaba Laszlo.

Paatelainen, who had two spells as a player with Hibs, replaced John Collins at Easter Road and led the Edinburgh side to two sixth-placed finishes in the Scottish Premier League.

He began coaching at youth level during his second stint at Hibs and moved on to first-team duties with St Johnstone and St Mirren, while still playing.

His first taste of management came with Cowdenbeath in August 2005 and he went on to win the Division Three title at the first time of asking.

In October 2006 he resigned his post at Central Park to take over at TPS Turku and steered the Finnish side to a third place finish before moving again to Edinburgh.



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see also
Killie place faith in Paatelainen
23 Jun 10 |  Kilmarnock
Bohemians boss linked with Killie
18 Jun 10 |  Kilmarnock
Haessler turns down Killie chance
17 Jun 10 |  Kilmarnock
Kean 'not interested' in Killie
03 Jun 10 |  Kilmarnock
Calderwood splits from Kilmarnock
31 May 10 |  Kilmarnock
Paatelainen parts with Hibernian
29 May 09 |  Hibernian


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