Former Romania coach Lucescu takes charge at Petrolul

Former Romania coach Lucescu takes charge at Petrolul
By Reuters

11/03/2014 at 21:12Updated 11/03/2014 at 21:30

Former Romania coach Razvan Lucescu has been appointed Petrolul Ploiesti coach to replace Cosmin Contra who this week joined La Liga club Getafe, the Romanian Cup holders said.

Lucescu, the son of Shakhtar Donetsk coach Mircea Lucescu, has signed a contract until the end of the 2014-2015 season, the club announced on Tuesday.

"One of the reasons to come here was (Petrolul striker Adrian) Mutu, he's a great player," said the 45-year-old Lucescu, a former goalkeeper who won two Romanian Cups with Rapid Bucharest during his playing career.

Mutu, who is Romania's joint top scorer, returned home in January to join four-times champions Petrolul from French Ligue 1 club Ajaccio.

"Contra's work here was exceptional," added Lucescu. "Petrolul have achieved fantastic things in the past two years. They were in the second division three years ago but they finished third in the league and they won the Cup last season."

Former Romania international Contra, 38, who played for AC Milan, Atletico Madrid and West Bromwich Albion, left Petrolul on Monday to take charge at Getafe.

Lucescu, who previously coached Rapid Bucharest, Brasov and Qatar's El Jaish, will take charge of his first Petrolul match on Sunday when they host second-placed FC Astra.

Petrolul are third in the standings with 45 points from 22 matches, seven points adrift of leaders Steaua and three behind FC Astra.