Aston Villa have appointed Steven Gerrard as their new head coach.
Gerrard joins from Rangers who he led to the Scottish Premiership title last season with Super Eagles internationals Joe Aribo and Leon Balogun playing a key role as the Gers ended the league campaign unbeaten.
The former Liverpool midfielder emerged as the leading candidate for the Villa head coach position, following the departure of Dean Smith at the weekend. Smith had been at Villa since October 2018.
Gerrard takes over a Villa side that sit 16th in the Premier League, having lost their last five matches since a 1-0 win over Manchester United at Old Trafford on September 25.
The 41-year-old’s first game in charge will be a home fixture against Brighton & Hove Albion on November 20.
Gerrard, a former Liverpool captain and Champions League winner, took over at Rangers in June 2018 in what was his first managerial role. He guided the Glasgow side to two second-place finishes before delivering a first league title in 10 years in 2020-21.
Villa CEO Christian Purslow said: “The Board of Aston Villa are delighted to appoint Steven as our new Head Coach.
“Since moving into coaching after his illustrious playing career, Steven began by managing and developing top young players in the Liverpool FC Academy which is experience we value highly at Aston Villa.
“He then took the brave decision to test himself in the intense and high pressured environment of the Scottish Old Firm. His subsequent achievement in winning the Premiership title with Glasgow Rangers really caught our eye as did his experience in Europe.
“It has been very clear in our discussions with him that Steven’s coaching ambitions, philosophy and values entirely match those of Aston Villa.
“We are excited he has agreed to lead us in the next phase of our ambitious plans as we look to build on the progress made since Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens took over the club in 2018.”
Steven Gerrard said: “Aston Villa is a club with a rich history and tradition in English football and I am immensely proud to become its new Head Coach.
“In my conversations with Nassef, Wes and the rest of the Board, it was apparent how ambitious their plans are for the club and I am looking forward to helping them achieve their aims.
“I would like to express my sincere gratitude to everybody associated with Glasgow Rangers for giving me the opportunity to manage such an iconic football club. Helping them secure a record-breaking 55th league title will always hold a special place in my heart. I would like to wish the players, staff and supporters the very best for the future.”