Damascus (AFP) – Veteran German coach Bernd Stange took charge of the Syrian national team on Wednesday, his sixth international appointment in a career which has also included a stint with Iraq.

The 69-year-old, who started his career in East Germany, has also managed Oman, Belarus and Singapore as well as two years with Iraq from 2002-2004 when the country was still under the regime of Saddam Hussein.

“We have reached an agreement on all the conditions. He will be assisted by another German coach with some Syrian help,” said Syrian football federation president Salah Ramadan.

Stange’s contract is for one year and he will start his new job in February.

The German replaces Ayman al-Hakim who quit in November after the war-ravaged nation failed to reach the World Cup finals after a heartbreaking play-off loss to Australia.