AC MILAN finally confirmed that Clarence Seedorf has been appointed as their new coach, on a two-and-a-half-year contract.
The former Holland midfielder, who spent 10 years playing for Milan and was this season on the books of Brazilian club Botafogo, announced his retirement from football on Tuesday in order to accept an offer to guide the Rossoneri. The Serie A outfit dismissed Massimiliano Allegri following last Sunday's 4-3 defeat at Sassuolo – a result which left them 30 points behind leaders Juventus at the halfway mark of the campaign.
Yesterday's statement issued by the club read: "AC Milan announces that Clarence Seedorf is the new coach of the first team and has signed a contract until June 30 2016."
While Milan's Serie A hopes are all but dead, the team are still alive in the Champions League and the Coppa Italia. They face Atletico Madrid next month in the last 16 of the European competition and take on Udinese in the quarter-finals of the domestic cup later this month.
Seedorf inherits a team that have won just five and lost seven of their 19 league games.
Milan are 11th in the table and just six points clear of the drop zone heading into Sunday's home match against Hellas Verona.
The 37-year-old, who joined Botafogo in 2012, is the only player to have won the Champions League four times with three different clubs, Ajax (1995), Real Madrid (1998) and Milan (2003 and '07), but has now turned his attention to a new challenge.
Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday at Botafogo's headquarters in Rio de Janeiro, he said: "Considering my relationship with the (Milan) president (Silvio Berlusconi), when he called me yesterday I couldn't say no after 10 years spent there (at Milan).
"I am retiring from football after 22 years.
"It has been a difficult night, but I am satisfied by what I've achieved in my career and what I've done at Botafogo.
"My aim is to dream again.
"This experience at Botafogo has helped me grow a lot and will no doubt help me in my next step as coach of AC Milan.
"I wish Botafogo and my team-mates the best.
"The level has increased thanks to everyone and I'm certain that the club will be able to remain at a high level."