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Page last updated at 20:04 GMT, Tuesday, 30 June 2009 21:04 UK

Baggies confirm Di Matteo as boss

Roberto Di Matteo
Di Matteo succeeded Paul Ince as Milton Keynes Dons boss in July 2008

West Bromwich Albion have appointed former Chelsea midfielder Roberto Di Matteo as their new head coach.

The 39-year-old, who guided Milton Keynes Dons to last season's League One play-offs, has signed a one-year rolling contract at The Hawthorns.

Albion's board approached Di Matteo late on Monday with a view to making him Tony Mowbray's successor.

Preston manager Alan Irvine was also on a shortlist of two, but he rejected the chance to fill the Baggies hot-seat.

Di Matteo's former Chelsea team-mate Eddie Newton, who was his right-hand man at MK Dons, will be his assistant at their new club.

Former sprinter Ade Mafe will also leave the Dons to become Albion's fitness coach.

Di Matteo has moved on after just one season at Stadium MK, having impressed in his first year in management.

606: DEBATE
BobbyHope

The Baggies, relegated from the Premier League last season, have been without a manager since Mowbray left for Scottish Premier League giants Celtic on 17 June.

West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace said: "I am delighted with Roberto's appointment, which concludes an intensive selection process during which over 40 names were considered.

"We shortlisted two outstanding candidates, spoke to both of them after receiving permission from their clubs, and ultimately Roberto was the unanimous choice of the board."

Born in Switzerland, Di Matteo made 34 appearance for Italy during an impressive playing career that was cut short by injury in 2002.

He joined Chelsea from Lazio in 1996 and became a firm favourite at Stamford Bridge before he was forced to retire at the age of 31.



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