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Friday, 27 May 2011 08:36

Jorge Costa reignites Portuguese connection at CFR Cluj

Coach takes quartet of players from Portugal with him to Romania

CFR ClujJorge CostaJorge Costa is back in management having taken the reins at Romanian club CFR Cluj. The former Academica coach has signed a two-year contract and says he “has joined Cluj to be champions.”
Cluj have established themselves as a top team in the eastern country in the last decade and claimed their first ever championship title in 2007/08 on the back of a strong recruitment policy from Portugal. At the time the Romanian club had ten Portuguese players on their books.
After winning the title again in 2009/10, Cluj finished a disappointing 10th this season and the club’s board has again turned to Portugal to try and bring back success, contracting former Portugal international Jorge Costa as their new coach.  
Speaking at a packed press conference, Costa told the assembled fans and media “I’m here to win and be champions, because this club has the personnel to achieve that. It has ambition and a good squad of players. I hope to bring back the title. We will go into every game striving to win it.”
Former FC Porto idol Costa has coached three clubs in Portugal – Braga, Olhanense and Academica – obtaining relatively successful results, especially at Olhanense who he led to promotion to the Portuguese top flight after a 20-year absence and then oversaw their survival in the Liga Sagres before moving on.
Costa has wasted little time in strengthening Cluj’s squad, contracting four players he knows well from the Portuguese league. Defenders Camora (ex-Naval) and Lionn (ex-Rio Ave), midfielder Renan (ex-Beira-Mar) and speedy winger Sougou (ex-Academica) have all left Portugal to join the Romanian club. 
by Tom Kundert

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