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Europa League round of 16 draw

Europa League
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By ESPN Staff

Belgium give Advocaat green light for AZ job

The Belgian football association have granted national team coach Dick Advocaat permission to speak to AZ Alkmaar over the possibility of him joining the Dutch champions until the end of the season.

• Bouwes on AZ Alkmaar

AZ approached the Belgian FA (KBVB) after sacking Ronald Koeman on Saturday.

The Alkmaar club won the Eredivisie under Louis van Gaal last season but have struggled this term and currently find themselves in seventh place, 19 points behind leaders FC Twente.

They see former Holland boss Advocaat as the man to reverse their slide and the KBVB are willing to co-operate on the proviso it is just a short-term agreement.

The KBVB said in a statement: "The executive committee yesterday decided to allow coach Dick Advocaat to pursue negotiations with AZ Alkmaar for the post of coach of the Dutch club until the end of the current season.

"The only condition is that the coach ends the collaboration at the end of the season. If Advocaat comes to an agreement with AZ, he will still continue his duties (with Belgium). The end of the season sees the start of an important period for the Red Devils, most notably the start of qualifying for Euro 2012."

AZ meet Belgian side Standard Liege on Wednesday in the Champions League. Standard need a win to stand any chance of progressing from Group H while AZ will claim a place in the Europa League with victory.

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