Former Manchester United and Real Madrid defender Gabriel Heinze has been named coach of Velez Sarsfield, the Argentine club announced.

The 39-year-old replaced Marcelo Gomez on Tuesday, who was named interim manager in November after the sacking of Omar De Felippe, reports Xinhua news agency.

Velez, 10-time champions of Argentina’s top flight tournament, are currently 19th in the Primera Division standings with just four wins from 12 matches.

“Gabriel is hard-working and obsessive coach,” club president Sergio Rapisarda told Radio Uno.

“He has all of the tools to lift the team out of the relegation zone and lead them back to the top of the standings.”

Rapisarda added that Heinze’s contract had no termination clause.

Capped 72 times for Argentina’s national team, Heinze retired in 2014 after a decorated 19-year career that included spells in Argentina, Spain, Portugal, France, England and Italy.

He has previously coached Godoy Cruz and Argentinos Juniors.