Football: Vrba agrees to take over Czech reins

Viktoria Pilsen coach Pavel Vrba has agreed to take over the reins of the Czech national team, the Czech Football Federation (FACR) said Tuesday.

Vrba will begin his new role on January 1.

The news was first published two weeks ago, although the appointment had not as yet been ratified.

"The executive committee of FACR has unanimously approved the nomination of Ravel Vrba to the head of the national team," said FACR spokesman Ondrej Lipa.

FACR general secretary Rudolf Repka added: "Vrba will sign a four-year contract with an option for another two seasons."

Vrba's first match in charge will be the international friendly against Norway in Prague on March 5.

The 49-year-old is credited by local press with being the architect of the "miracle of Pilsen".

Since his arrival at the previously modest Viktoria in 2008, the club has gone on to win two titles, in 2011 and 2013, and has broken the stranglehold of the powerful Prague-based clubs Slavia and Sparta.

Vrba will take over from interim boss Josef Pesice, who replaced Michal Bilek in September after the Czechs failed in their bid to reach next year's World Cup in Brazil.

jma/sw/bc