The former Barcelona forward, who tasted league success as a manager in both Israel, with Maccabi Tel Aviv, and Austria, with Red Bull Salzburg, was presented to the media on Friday, and he wasted little time in outlining his blueprint for improving their fortunes.
“I love playing with a lot of fans in the stadium at every match,” the 44-year old told reporters. “I love football history, and Saint-Etienne is perhaps the best club in France if we’re talking about history.
“Everyone here has confidence in me and so I decided to come. I think it’s the best option for me and the best for the club too, I hope. I’m very pleased and very happy to be the coach of Saint-Etienne.
“The objective is to keep improving every day. We’ll start with that, with each player, individually. Then we should improve as a squad and as a team.
“The players need to improve and so do I, I need to improve every day. That’s my philosophy; I want to the players to get better and better.
“It’s great for Ligue 1 to be exposed to some different philosophies and other mentalities.
“I like attacking football; I always think about how to do my opponents the most damage and how to score at least one more goal than them. I feel very ill at ease when I don’t have the ball, and I want my players to feel the same way.
“That means winning the ball back faster, staying higher up the pitch and heading faster towards the opponents’ goal.”