Football: Vrba to take over as Czech coach - Federation

Viktoria Pilsen coach Pavel Vrba will take charge of the Czech Republic national team in January after activating a clause in his contract, the Czech Football Federation (FACR) announced on Monday.

"I would like (Pavel Vrba) to start working for the FACR from January 1 in the build-up to the start of the Euro 2016 qualifiers," FACR president Miroslav Pelta was quoted as saying on the federation's website.

Vrba is under contract with the Czech champions Pilsen until June 2015 but he can leave before then if a release fee of 8 million crowns (295,000 euros, $398,000) is paid.

"It is the decision of Pavel Vrba, who prefers a new challenge. We respect this decision without trying to hide our immense disappointment," said Pilsen manager Adolf Sadek, who added that Vrba will leave the club on December 15.

Since arriving at Pilsen in 2008, Vrba has led the club to remarkable success, winning two league titles and leading them into this season's Champions League group stage.

He will take charge of their final two group games against Manchester City on November 27 and CSKA Moscow on December 10.

Josef Pesice has been in charge of the Czech Republic on an interim basis since Michal Bilek departed after the team missed out on qualification for next year's World Cup.