Football: New Valencia head coach Cesare Prandelli dines with owner Peter Lim

Cesarre Prandelli (in blue) arriving at Forum Shopping Mall with Luiz Felipe Scolari (left) with Anil Murthy (in orange) behind them.
Cesarre Prandelli (in blue) arriving at Forum Shopping Mall with Luiz Felipe Scolari (left) with Anil Murthy (in orange) behind them. ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN
Cesarre Prandelli (in blue) arriving at Forum Shopping Mall with Luiz Felipe Scolari (3rd from left) and Anil Murthy (extreme right).
Cesarre Prandelli (in blue) arriving at Forum Shopping Mall with Luiz Felipe Scolari (3rd from left) and Anil Murthy (extreme right). ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN

SINGAPORE - Valencia has appointed Italian Cesare Prandelli as their new head coach. The Spanish club, owned by Singapore billionaire Peter Lim, had sacked Pako Ayestaran after a poor start to the season.

On Friday, the 59-year-old was spotted in Singapore at Forum The Shopping Mall in Orchard Road. He was accompanied by Brazilian coach Luiz Felipe Scolari and Anil Murthy, executive director of Valencia. It is understood the group had dinner with Lim.

Prandelli will next fly off to Spain to begin work. Valencia, 15th in the Spanish La Liga, take on third-place Atletico Madrid on Sunday.

The new coach will have his hands full as he aims to steer the ship at Valencia. The club are not helped by the departures of key players, including captain Shkodran Mustafi, key midfielder Andre Gomes and striker Paco Alcacer, which had fans in an uproar.

They endured a dismal start to the season, losing their first four matches before Ayestaran's departure. Since then, however, they have won two games in a row.

Prandelli, whose last stint was with Turkish club Galatasaray in 2014, brings with him a wealth of experience from a 26-year coaching career. The 2009 Serie A Coach of the Year also led the Italian national team to the final of the 2012 European Championship, where they lost 4-0 to Spain.