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Gross takes over at Stuttgart

Swiss football coach Christian Gross has been given the reins at German club VfB Stuttgart after Markus Babbel was sacked following eight games without a win.

Gross, 55, previously led Basel to the Champions League second round six years ago. His first game in charge will be on Wednesday in the Champions League when Stuttgart can advance to the knockout stage if they beat Romanian club Unirea Urziceni.

Gross, who once played for Bochum in the German Bundesliga, also coached Tottenham in the English Premier League but only lasted nine months after being ridiculed by the media.

In addition, he won two Swiss championships with Grasshoppers Zurich and four more with Basel.

Stuttgart confirmed the dismissal of Babbel and his two assistants late on Sunday, before announcing the appointment of Gross.

About 3,000 angry supporters protested in front of the club's headquarters on Saturday after ten-man Bochum rallied to earn a 1-1 draw at Stuttgart. Police used clubs and pepper spray to disperse the rowdy crowd and three fans were arrested while two officers were injured.

Stuttgart is in the relegation zone in 16th place after finishing third last season. and agencies


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