New Japan coach Vahid Halilhodzic has revealed his plans to improve the team’s position on the FIFA rankings.
The Bosnian spoke to the media on Friday, just a day after Japanese Football Association approved his appointment at an executive board meeting, following the sacking of Javier Aguirre last month amidst a match-fixing scandal.
"I was able to get Algeria to No. 17 in the rankings and I want to do the same for Japan," Halilhodzic said.
"It won't come overnight but given time Japan can improve, too."
The 62-year-old Halilhodzic oversaw Algeria’s 2014 World Cup campaign, where they advanced to the knock-out stages of the event for the first time.
Japanese media reports that his annual salary through to the 2018 World Cup will be in the region of $2.2 million.
The former Yugoslavia striker takes over an established international team that qualified for the last five World Cups, but is yet to advance beyond the first knock-out stage.
"I'm excited and honoured to be part of this new challenge," Halilhodzic added.
"I look forward to working with the players, and the first goal will be to qualify for the World Cup."
Halilhodzic, who resigned from Halilhodzic, will take charge of Japan for the first time during against Tunisia on March 27 and Uzbekistan four days later.
Aquirre was removed from his position on February 4 over allegations of involvement in match-fixing while working in Spain.