Turkey coach Fatih Terim is set to coach a European club side next season as he revealed after his side had pushed three-time champions Germany to the limit in their Euro 2008 3-2 defeat in the semi-final on Wednesday.
The 54-year-old – whose finest moment as a club coach had come when he too Galatasaray to the 2003 UEFA Cup title – would not reveal which club it would be as he took his country's agonising loss on the chin.
“I have already said that I would not be working in Turkey next season,” said Terim, who has also coached Italian giants AC Milan.
“I am someone who keeps his promises. I am probably going to return to a European club. But it is not for me to make the announcement.
“I have to hold talks with the Federation before making it official. I said goodbye to the players and that is all as it is the end of the tournament,” said Terim, saluting his squad for coming so close while recognising that “you can't always have things go your way.
Turkish television reports quoted Federation president Hasan Dogan as saying following the match that they do not want to part ways with Terim, nicknamed “The Emperor” for his leadership skills.
Terim said he was proud of his side's resilience in a performance which showed “they really wanted that win.
“We would have hoped to reach the final, but sometimes you do lose in the final minutes and you have to accept that.”
He said his side must now build on their success at Euro 2008 by using their last four appearance here to make the knock-out stages of future World Cups.
Six years ago, Turkey made the last four of the World Cup in Japan and South Korea, before they were beaten by Brazil.
“We must strive to keep reaching the semi-finals, football is important in Turkey,” said Terim.
“There were 70 million Turkish hearts beating with the players' out there today and I believe a team like Turkey must keep getting to these tournaments and proving themselves.
“I hope we can build on this success.
“I am proud of my players and I think their desire, tactics and performance means they showed the world what a great team they are.
“I think we are leaving as the most colourful team of the tournament. We were almost there, but that is football.
“It was important to have a team which generates excitement amongst our fans, it was important to be here, it is important to be here as much as possible to get the players a taste for success.
“If we don't come back next time it will make it all harder for the next time,” he concluded.
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