SVEN-GORAN ERIKSSON has turned down an approach from German second division side 1860 Munich to become their coach after negotiations reached an advanced stage.
The former England manager was first linked with a move to Munich last November when he accepted an invitation to attend one of their games by club investor Hasan Ismaik.
Reiner Maurer was sacked as the Lions' coach shortly after Eriksson's visit, fuelling speculation that the Swede was going to replace him.
Instead Alexander Schmidt was appointed, but negotiations with Eriksson continued behind the scenes until the 64-year-old finally rejected their offer today.
"A bit of time has passed since my first contact with the club in November and we all know how quick-moving the professional football world is," said Eriksson in a statement.
"Therefore, I would like to ask everybody involved to respect my decision. I wish my friend Hasan Ismaik and 1860 Munich lots of success in the future."
1860's general manager Robert Schafer had flown out to London earlier this week to discuss terms with Eriksson, whose appointment appeared imminent.
"We spoke at length and in depth about the club and the 2. Bundesliga," said Schafer.
"We had also considered how we could integrate the current coaching staff into his new backroom team."
Eriksson's rejection means that Schmidt remains in charge of the side, who are seeking a return to the top flight of German football after nine years in the second division.
They are currently sixth in the 2. Bundesliga, five points adrift of the top three just over halfway through the season.