Veteran coach Cuca set for Atletico Mineiro return

RIO DE JANEIRO, March 2 (Xinhua) — Veteran Brazilian manager Alexi Stival has reached an agreement to take charge of his former club Atletico Mineiro, according to local media reports.

The 57-year-old will replace Argentine coach Jorge Sampaoli, who parted ways with the Belo Horizonte side last month to join Marseille, Globo Esporte reported on Tuesday.

Stival, better known in Brazil as Cuca, became available after leaving Santos last week – a month after the club’s 1-0 defeat to Palmeiras in the Copa Libertadores final.

Cuca managed Atletico Mineiro from 2011 to 2013 and led the club to the 2013 Copa Libertadores title.

As a player, Cuca was a prolific striker for Gremio, Real Valladolid, Palmeiras and Santos. He earned one Brazil cap in 1991.

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