Former Real Madrid, coach John Toshack, who had been tipped to become the next manager of the Republic of Ireland, has agreed to become the coach of Italian Serie B club Catania.

Catania sacked Maurizio Pellegrino after their 2-0 home defeat by Napoli earlier this week and are currently fourth-bottom of their division.

A statement on the club’s website read: ‘John Benjamin Toshack is the new trainer of Catania football club.

‘The agreement with the Gaucci family was completed a few hours ago in Rome.’

For Toshack, who has coached throughout Europe, this is his first experience of working in Italy.

The former Liverpool player began his managerial career at Swansea and there have been spells at Sporting Lisbon, Real Sociedad, Real Madrid, Besiktas, St Etienne and the Welsh national team.