Valerien Ismael: Barnsley appoint new head coach to succeed Gerhard Struber

Valerien Ismael
Barnsley say Valerien Ismael will have a watching brief at Millwall on Saturday before meeting his squad the following day

Championship club Barnsley have named former Crystal Palace defender Valerien Ismael as their new head coach.

The France-born 45-year-old, who now has German citizenship, has replaced Gerhard Struber on a three-year deal.

Struber left Oakwell earlier this month to take charge of Major League Soccer side New York Red Bulls.

Ismael made 13 appearances for Palace in 1998 during his playing career and has previously been head coach of Wolfsburg, Apollon Smyrnis and LASK.

Ismael, who left Austrian club LASK in July, will watch the Tykes' match at Millwall on Saturday from the stands before meeting the first-team squad on Sunday.

"In Valerien we have a young, ambitious coach who already possesses a wealth of experience across the continent," Barnsley chief executive Dane Murphy told the club website.external-link

"Throughout the recruitment process, he was the stand-out candidate and his style of play will complement our philosophy."

Ismael also had spells at Strasbourg, Lens, Werder Bremen, Bayern Munich and Hannover 96 during his 15-year playing career.

"I feel a great deal of excitement about the new position and the new challenges that it brings," he said.

Barnsley are 21st in the Championship table after their first six games of the season, having started 2020-21 with a six-match winless streak.

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