Reinaldo Rueda leaves Flamengo to become Chile manager

RIO DE JANEIRO -- Flamengo say Reinaldo Rueda has resigned as the club coach to take over Chile.

Flamengo made the announcement on Monday, and added Rueda was taking his staff with him.

In a statement, the National Association of Professional Soccer of Chile (ANFP) announced the appointment of Rueda as its new coach until the end of the South American qualifier for the Qatar World Cup 2022.

"In case of securing a spot for the World Cup, the contract will be automatically extended until the end of Qatar 2022", the ANFP added.

ANFP president Arturo Salah added: "We spent the necessary time to find the best coach for our team. A coach with experience in national teams, who has qualified for the World Cup and has a high-level sporting career.

Rueda explained his decision and thanked Flamengo in a message posted to his Twitter account.

"I have decided to leave my position as team's head coach due to strictly personal motives with the opportunity ahead to start a new professional challenge," it read. "It was not easy to make this decision because of the respect that I have for the team and the love that I have received from everyone since my arrival.

"Therefore, on behalf of my assistants and in my name, I offer my sincere thanks to the entire Flamengo's family, executives, players and all team officials. And my deepest admiration, respect and gratitude to the fans that took me as part of this family."

Flamengo have named former player and coach Paulo Cesar Carpegiani to take over for Rueda. Carpegiani, who led Flamengo to their only Copa Libertadores and Club World Cup title, took over as coach of Bahia in the middle of last season.

Chile's previous coach, Juan Antonio Pizzi, left the job after failing to lead the Copa America champion to the World Cup in Russia.

Rueda was appointed by Flamengo in August, and contracted to December 2018.

The Colombian coach took the Rio de Janeiro giants to the finals of the Brazilian Cup and Copa Sudamericana.

Chilean media reported the negotiations over the national job had been going on since the beginning of December.