Coach Lucescu 'happy' after changing decision to quit Dynamo Kiev

Kiev (AFP) –


Mircea Lucescu on Thursday reversed his decision to quit Dynamo Kiev just days after news of the controversial appointment of the former Shakhtar Donetsk coach sparked an outcry from fans.

"I am very happy to come back to Ukraine. I really hope we will go a long way together," Lucescu said during a news conference with Dynamo president Igor Surkis.

"I hope that the supporters (...) will end up being on our side. They should first appreciate my courage to have taken this step and come to Dynamo," he added.

The club's decision to hire Romanian Lucescu sparked an uproar from fans because of the his 12-year spell in charge of bitter rivals Shakhtar Donetsk, where he won a host of domestic honours and the 2009 UEFA Cup.

Lucescu, 75, told Romanian reporters on Monday he would not take up the post at Dynamo Kiev after fans reacted furiously, describing his appointment as a "spit in the face".

Surkis refuted the claim on Monday saying that Lucescu would remain head coach.

Dynamo said last week that Lucescu, who has been unemployed since February 2019, had signed a two-year contract with the option of extending it for one season.

Lucescu took over after the sacking of Oleksiy Mykhailychenko, who guided the club to a 12th Ukrainian Cup earlier this month but saw them finish second in the league title race, a record 23 points behind Shakhtar.

Over his 40-year career, Lucescu has coached the Romanian and Turkish national teams as well as clubs in Romania, Italy, Turkey, Ukraine and Russia.