The Chinese national football team has appointed former Everton midfielder Li Tie as the new head coach, the country's football association announced Thursday.
Li takes over as the long-term replacement for Marcello Lippi, who quit following a surprise loss to Syria in November in a qualifying match for the 2022 World Cup.
Li, 42, was selected from a three-man short-list by the Chinese Football Association. He has led a reserve side to the East Asian Championships in South Korea in December.
As a player, Li represented China on 92 occasions, including at the 2002 World Cup, the country's only appearance in the competition to date. Later that summer Li moved to England from the Chinese side Liaoning to join Everton, initially on loan and spent three seasons with the Goodison Park-based club.
China trail Syria in Group A of Asia's second phase of qualifying for the World Cup, with only the winners guaranteed to advance to the next round, where four of the continent's berths at the finals will be filled.
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