Vanderlei Luxembourg returns to the benches

The former Real Madrid coach takes the helm of the Cruzeiro at 69 years of age. The team is on the decline in the Brazilian Second Division.


Vanderlei Luxemburg, former Brazil coach and former Real Madrid coach, among other clubs, will coach Cruzeiro for the third time with the mission of removing it from the relegation places of the Second Division of the Brazilian Championship. "One of the most victorious professionals in the centennial history of Cruzeiro is back at the heavenly club," the Belo Horizonte team announced on Tuesday in a note. The 69-year-old coach will thus return to take charge of a team after his last and short experience of just two months at Vasco da Gama, which he could not save from relegation to the silver category of Brazilian football. Luxembourg now faces the challenge of rescuing a Cruzeiro that has been dealing with a serious sporting and institutional crisis since 2019, when for the first time in its 100-year history it was relegated to the Second Division.

He will replace Brazilian Mozart Santos, who resigned last Friday. This will be his third adventure as a coach of the mining team, which he already commanded between 2002 and 2004, as well as in 2015. With Luxembourg on the bench, Cruzeiro signed one of its most successful seasons in 2003, when it won the Mineiro Championship, the Brazil Cup and the League title. Today, the reality of the club is different. After fifteen rounds played in Serie B, the Blue and Whites are third to last with just two victories, seven draws and six defeats, which puts them at risk of dropping to the Third Division at the end of the season.

Despite the last disappointment with Vasco, Luxembourg has a wide track record in which five Brazilian League titles shine at the controls of Palmeiras (1993 and 1994), Corinthians (1998), Cruzeiro (2003) and Santos (2004). He also won the 1999 Copa América in Paraguay as Brazil coach. In 2005 he managed Real Madrid, but before the end of that season he was dismissed. Later, he continued his coaching career in Brazil, although between 2015 and 2016 he tried his luck at Tianjin Tianhai in China.

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