Chesterfield have appointed Dean Saunders as their new manager on a two-year contract.
He takes over from Paul Cook, who left the Spireites earlier this week to join Portsmouth after taking the club to the League One play-offs.
Saunders, 50, ended the season as interim manager of Crawley Town, where he oversaw an improvement in the club’s results.
He was previously manager of Wrexham, Doncaster Rovers and Wolverhampton Wanderers and was first-team coach at Blackburn Rovers and Newcastle United. He also spent three years as Wales’ assistant-manager under John Toshack.
The holder of a UEFA Pro Licence, which is the highest coaching qualification available, Saunders had an illustrious playing career as a striker, starring for the likes of Liverpool, Aston Villa, Galatasaray and Benfica. He was also capped 75 times by Wales.
Chesterfield chief executive Chris Turner said: “When chairman Dave Allen and I met Dean, it was clear that he shared our vision for the future of the club. He has infectious enthusiasm for the job and he is in the enviable position of joining a club with solid foundations.”
Saunders said: “It is a great opportunity as this is a club on the rise, run by good people, and I am inheriting a very good team from Paul Cook.
“Taking over now gives me a full pre-season to make a fresh start, put my plans in place and work with the squad, which is a great position to be in.
“The profile of the club has been raised in the last few years and there has been an impressive increase in attendances so it is an exciting prospect and I can’t wait to get started.”