Smith, Terry take Villa in new direction

Dean Smith has been appointed as the new head coach of Aston Villa, with former England and Chelsea captain John Terry named as his assistant.

Smith, a lifelong Villa fan, leaves Brentford while Terry moves into coaching having just announced his retirement as a player.

Jesus Garcia Pitarch has also been appointed as sporting director.

Aston Villa chief executive Christian Purslow said on the club's official website: "These three appointments represent the start of a new era and direction at Aston Villa and we are delighted to secure their services after an extensive search.

"Dean has a clear and successful coaching philosophy as well as a real understanding of Aston Villa Football Club. He is also knowledgeable about the Championship."

Brentford, who are seventh in the Championship and eight places above Villa, confirmed assistant head coach Thomas Frank will take training on Thursday.

Terry, 37, finished his playing career last season with defeat in the Championship play-off final with Villa under former boss Steve Bruce, who was sacked last week.

Pitarch held similar roles at Valencia and Atletico Madrid.

Villa is home to former Socceroos captain Mile Jedinak and two of the club's players are currently on loan to A-League clubs - Ritchie de Laet (Melbourne City) and Ross McCormack (Central Coast Mariners).