LONDON Relegation-threatened Hull City appointed Portuguese manager Marco Silva on Thursday to replace the sacked Mike Phelan and take charge until the end of the Premier League season.
The 39-year-old Silva will make his debut in Saturday's home FA Cup third-round tie with fellow strugglers Swansea City, who are also under new management.
The new head coach's immediate task will be to lift a side who were promoted last May but are now languishing at the bottom of the table without a win in the league since November.
Silva, who resigned from Greek club Olympiakos Piraeus in June after leading them to a record 43rd league title, previously coached Estoril and Sporting Lisbon in his home country.
The Premier League's second youngest manager after Bournemouth's Eddie Howe becomes Hull's third boss since the end of last season.
"Marco is a young coach who has impressed us with his philosophy and football style," Hull's vice-chairman Ehab Allam told the club website (www.hullcitytigers.com).
"He has a great track record and we feel this is a bold and exciting appointment in our aim to retain the club's Premier League status. Marco will be bringing his own back-room team who have all played their part in his recent success.
"We are already working hard with Marco and his team to deliver some key additions to our squad during this transfer window."
Silva will be joined by assistant head coach Joao Pedro Sousa, first-team coach Goncalo Pedro and goalkeeping coach Hugo Oliveira.
Phelan, who was a former assistant to Alex Ferguson at Manchester United, was sacked on Tuesday after a 3-1 defeat to West Bromwich Albion.
He had replaced Steve Bruce, who secured promotion but resigned in July three weeks before the start of the season.
Although Hull have reached the League Cup semi-finals, where Silva will face compatriot Jose Mourinho's Manchester United over two legs later this month, they have taken just 13 points from 20 league matches.
Allam said on Wednesday it was time for a fresh approach and Hull were good enough to stay up with a couple of key additions to the squad.
"I acknowledge that our position in the table will make recruitment more challenging," he said.
"We feel that the nucleus of the current squad combined with some new additions during this important transfer window will give us the best possible chance of achieving survival in the coming months."
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin; Editing by Louise Ireland and Clare Fallon)