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ESPN FC  By ESPN

Chivas hire Jose Cardozo as coach to replace Matias Almeyda

Chivas named Jose Saturnino Cardozo as its new coach on Tuesday to replace to Matias Almeyda.

Almeyda told ESPN Mexico on May 31 he was stepping down from his post at the Liga MX club and made the move official on Monday. He leaves after winning five titles in almost three years at the helm.

Cardozo is the 25th different coaching change made at Chivas since Jorge Vergara became owner of the club in late 2002, but the new boss said he's up to the challenge.

"Any manager who tells you that he doesn't want to coach Chivas is lying," Cardoza said. "It's a big challenge, the greatest that I have in my career. I have no doubt that we will be fighting for titles, we'll put the team in the place it deserves and we'll have a great team.

"This is a very skilled roster, a good mix of young and experience. There are critics because there are no big stars, but those who really know how to play in this team are here. I respect the career of any player a lot, but you win based on your skills and commitment."

Cardozo, among the Mexican league's top scorers in his playing days, started his coaching career in Paraguay and has since managed Queretaro, Toluca, Jaguares, Puebla and Veracruz in Mexico.

Chivas is facing a tumultuous time as Almeyda's announcement on Monday prompted general manager Francisco Gabriel de Anda to resign as well.

Cardozo spoke of the magnitude of the job at hand, adding: "Chivas is the biggest club in Mexico and of the most popular teams in the world with more than 40 million fans."

"The players have to understand that their commitment is with the club. It's normal for the players and the fans to be upset about the departure of a winning coach like Almeyda who is leaving a great mark on this team."

The Guadalajara club is also in a financial crisis and has sold many of its high-profile players, including Rodolfo Cota and Rodolfo Pizarro.

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