Shanghai Port's new coach aims for trophy
Shanghai Port has named Francisco Javier Pereira Megía its new manager ahead of the 2023 Chinese Super League.
The Spaniard is no stranger to China, having managed another CSL side Henan Jianye.
"I know the expectations are running high," Pereira said in his first public meeting with Shanghai media and fans on Friday. "What I really want is to get a trophy. We need to get back to the winning ways."
Fifty-six-year-old Pereira had coaching experience in Spanish clubs like Levante, Valladolid, as well as EPL sides like Watford and Fulham.
After being named Henan Jianye's manager in 2020, he steered the club to safety in the relegation play-off. He then went to Spain to coach La Liga side Levante for a short spell. Last year, he came back to China and joined the renamed Henan Songshan Longmen.
"As a coach from Spain, I like to play offensive football, but I know we need to find balance in the defensive side as well," he said.
Shanghai Port finished fourth in last year's CSL, which was crowned by Wuhan Sanzhen.
The 2023 CSL will kick off in April, and the home-away match format will be resumed in the new season. The brand-new SAIC Motor Pudong Arena will become Port's home ground.
Due to pandemic-control reasons, the CSL matches have been played in designated cities in the past two years.
Currently, Shanghai Port's seven national team players, including Wu Lei, Yan Junling, Zhang Linpeng and Li Shuai, are training with the national team in Haikou, Hainan Province.
Brazilian midfielder Oscar and Sierra Leone striker Issa Kallon are training with the team in Shanghai.