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Melbourne Football Club

Roos to coach Dees in 2014

PAUL Roos has been confirmed as Melbourne's new coach.

In a major coup for the Demons, who are struggling both on and off the field, Roos has signed a two-year deal that includes an option for a third season.

However, the 50-year-old insists it is a short-term appointment, revealing the club would seek a senior assistant coach as part of a succession plan.

Roos wasn't interested in a five-year contract but warmed to the idea of joining the Demons when interim 

CEO Peter Jackson suggested he could set the path for the club and then hand over to a successor.

"I'm extremely, extremely excited about being introduced as the Melbourne coach," Roos said. "I'm really looking forward to the next couple of years … and setting a direction for the players … and for the football club, and setting some really high standards.

"[It's] going to be a huge challenge … I know it's going to be a very, very difficult job, but I'm very excited about being here."

Roos was bullish about the Demons' future, adamant the club would be successful under him or the next coach.

"I would love to hold another cup up, but it's about setting these guys a path so that they know that for the next … five to seven years who there senior coach will be. It'll be me and then someone else," he said.

"That's the thing that really appealed to me - to get in and do the hard yards, take a few knocks along the way, which is fine, work with an outstanding player group, and try and set some standards, and try and win some games of football.

"If there's success in the two or three years, well and good. If there's not, I guarantee there will be after that. And if someone else takes the glory, that's fine by me."

Roos said one of his first priorities would be to secure the services of out-of-contract players Colin Sylvia and Jack Watts, who he regarded as "quality boys".

Jackson said Roos was the ideal person to lift the Demons back up the ladder.

"If you look at the two great clubs of the modern era, being Geelong and Sydney … we needed to get people out of those sort of cultures who knew what great football cultures are. What better man to turn it around than (the one) that turned around the Sydney footy club in the first place?" Jackson said.

"It's fantastic for us to have him and get him to lay the foundations for football for the next decade."

Melbourne chairman Glen Bartlett described Roos' appointment as "the most significant news for this club for a very long time".

Bartlett also praised Jackson for his "professionalism and persistence" in snaring Roos. The new coach acknowledged this point, describing Jackson as "a very dogged character and I'd probably play him in the back pocket to be perfectly frank".

Roos sensationally declared his growing interest in accepting the job at Melbourne last Friday night after months of apparent indifference.

The Demons, and Jackson in particular, continued to woo Roos and momentum grew once he told the Brisbane Lions he was not interested in moving north to seek their vacant position.

Roos took the Sydney Swans to two Grand Finals for one premiership, breaking a premiership drought of 72 years (the longest in League history) in 2005.

He coached the Swans to seven finals series from eight full seasons, including six in succession from 2003-08. His strike rate over 202 games was 57.9 per cent.

Roos also created a player-driven culture that is the envy of most AFL clubs.

oos resigned from the coaching position in 2010 and handed the job over to his assistant John Longmire, who guided the Swans to a flag last year.