MANILA, Philippines -- Former U.S. captain Thomas Dooley has been appointed as head coach of the Philippines national team.
Philippine Football Federation president Mariano Araneta said Friday that Dooley will start immediately preparing the team for the Challenge Cup in May in the Maldives.
"We're serious with the preparation for the AFC Challenge Cup," Araneta told the national team's official website.
Dooley added: "I am excited to take the task. We have to prepare right now.
"It will be difficult, but we need to deal with the circumstances."
The 52-year-old Dooley was selected ahead of four unnamed European candidates on the shortlist.
Dooley spent much of his playing career in Germany before stints with Columbus and the New York MetroStars in Major League Soccer.
He made 81 appearances for the U.S. national team, appearing at the 1994 and 1998 World Cups.