Alberto Malesani, the man who led Parma to their UEFA Cup triumph in 1999, was confirmed as the new coach of Greek champions Panathinaikos on Wednesday.

The club declined to give details of his contract but according to reports in the Greek media, he has signed an 18 month contract worth €1m.

The Italian, who is the club’s third coach this season following the sackings of Itshak Shum and Zdenek Scasny, will watch the UEFA Cup tie against Seville in Athens on Wednesday. His first game in charge will be the league match against Egaleo on Sunday.

Malesani’s previous clubs include Fiorentina, Parma- with whom he also won the Italian championship – Modena and Verona. He was previously linked with Panathinaikos in 2001 but was out of contract before signing on Wednesday.

The Greek champions, are currently second in the league five points adrift of Olmpiakos.