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French club Monaco appoints Niko Kovac as coach

MONACO (AP) — Struggling with consistency since upsetting Paris Saint-Germain to win the French league three years ago, Monaco has appointed Niko Kovac as coach. The eight-time French champions cited Kovac's success coaching Bayern Munich, Frankfurt and the Croatian national team. The club announced the hiring Sunday after it fired Roberto Moreno.

Kovac was scheduled to lead his first training session on Monday. “His energy, his way of working and his vision of the game make him the coach the club needs to assert our ambitions and build solid foundations to create sustainable success for the future,” sporting director Paul Mitchell said.

The 48-year-old former Croatia international coached Bayern to a league and cup double in 2019 but was fired in November. Monaco finished in ninth place last season, having narrowly avoided relegation the season before during a turbulent campaign where it fired Leonardo Jardim, hired former France great Thierry Henry, then fired Henry and re-hired Jardim.

Jardim, who guided Monaco to the league title and Champions League semifinals in 2017, was then fired again last December to make way for Moreno. French clubs recently resumed training for the new season, which is set to start on Aug. 22.

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