Garcia named new Getafe boss

MADRID - Getafe have appointed Luis Garcia Plaza as coach on a three-year deal, the La Liga club said on Thursday as they target a top-six finish under new owners.

The 38-year-old paid his way out of his contract with Levante earlier this week and replaces Michel, who Getafe let go after they narrowly escaped relegation last month.

In April, Getafe were taken over by Royal Emirates Group, a Dubai investment firm chaired by Sheikh Butti Bin Suhail Al Maktoum and their priority is qualifying for a place in Europe.

"Getafe have the same hunger and enthusiasm to develop as I do," Garcia said at his presentation. "The three-year contract is a commitment to me on their part, and to them from me."

Garcia, a journeyman defender who never played in the top flight, won plaudits for preserving tiny Levante's La Liga status on a limited budget last season, the club's first back in the Primera division and his first as a coach at that level.

He follows several young coaches who have cut their teeth at Getafe before moving to bigger clubs in recent years, such as Quique Sanchez Flores, Bernd Schuster and Michael Laudrup.

Getafe avoided the drop on the final day of last season, finishing a point above the drop zone in 16th.