Monaco coach Jardim extends contract until 2020

Football Soccer - Juventus v AS Monaco - UEFA Champions League Semi Final Second Leg - Juventus Stadium, Turin, Italy - 9/5/17 Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim applauds fans after the match Reuters / Max Rossi Livepic

PARIS (Reuters) - Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim, who steered the club to their first Ligue 1 title in 17 years, has extended his contract until 2020, the French champions said in a statement on Wednesday.

The Portuguese coach, who has moulded Monaco into one of the most exciting attacking teams in Europe, guided them to the semi-finals of this season’s Champions League while also ending Paris St Germain’s domestic dominance in style.

The club scored 107 goals en route to clinching the French title with French teenage prodigy Kylian Mbappe and Colombia forward Radamel Falcao spearheading an irresistible frontline.

Portuguese media reports had linked Jardim with a money-spinning move to China, but he said on Wednesday that he was excited by the prospect of remaining in Monaco.

“We will work with the ambition to continue this project and continue to grow this club with the same passion that has inspired us from the beginning,” he said in a club statement.

“I am convinced that the future looks very exciting at Monaco.”

Jardim joined the club in 2014 from Portuguese side Sporting. He has won 67 of his 114 Ligue 1 matches at the helm, giving him the highest win percentage (58.7) of any Monaco coach who has been in charge for at least 100 matches.

“He is one of the best coaches in European football and, despite overtures, he has chosen to continue the adventure at AS Monaco, which demonstrates our ambition,” said club Vice President Vadim Vasilyev.

Writing by Toby Davis in London; Editing by Ken Ferris