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Dutchman De Jong is the new Leopards coach

Struggling Kenyan Premier League giants AFC Leopards have finally settled on Dutchman Hendrik Peter de Jong as their new head coach.

Club chairman Allan Kasavuli and secretary George Aladwa on Thursday confirmed that De Jong will arrive in the country Saturday morning.

The coach is set to travel with the squad to Sudan for the inaugural Nile Basin Cup championships which AFC Leopards are representing the country by virtue of being the domestic cup holders.

De Jong has agreed to sign a one year contract with Leopards which is subject to renewal on performance basis.

“This brings to an end our search for a coach. It has been long and frustrating but we have officially settled on De Jong because the other coach (Trevor Morgan) we had agreed terms with is yet to commit due to other offers elsewhere,” club Secretary George Aladwa said.

“We have already dispatched an air ticket and the coach will be here on Saturday, we will introduce him to the players then he will travel with the squad to Sudan,” he added.

Barely a week ago, Leopards had announced they had settled on Briton Trevor Morgan, but the announcement was short-lived after the coach hinted he will be taking another job in India to manage Spanish club Atletico Madrid’s franchise.

“We therefore had to move fast, go through other CVs and we have settled on De Jong.”

De Jong will work with Abdalla Juma who has been in charge at Leopards over the last three matches since the sacking of head coach James Nandwa and his assistant Mickey Weche over a month ago.

AFC Leopards are 12th on the KPL log with only 14 points from 12 matches. Their last match against Thika United was abandoned in the 83rd minute after fans invaded the pitch. Leopards were trailing by a solitary goal.

De Jong, who speaks fluent English, was born in December 8, 1970 in Asperen, Holland and played for NAC Breda and Sparta Rotterdam. He has been involved in KNVB coaching courses and has also coached the Dutch youth national team.

He is currently a youth director at the Hungarian national soccer academy.

Kasavuli believes the Dutchman will steer the team to better results in the remaining league matches and also in the cup competitions.