Former Brazil striker Romario was named player-coach of Vasco da Gama on Thursday, two days after announcing he had failed a dope test while playing for the team in October.
Romario, who blamed a hair loss treatment after testing positive for the banned substance finasteride, will be in charge of Vasco for the opening games of next season, club president Eurico Miranda told reporters.
The 1994 World Cup striker, still playing at the age of 41, has been provisionally suspended until Dec. 18, when Brazil's disciplinary tribunal is due to hear the case.
Miranda said Romario's role would be restricted to coaching if the tribunal extends the ban.
Vasco are due to play two friendlies in Dubai in January before taking part in the Carioca championship, one of the regional tournaments which kick off the Brazilian season in mid-January.
Romario replaces Valdir Espinosa, who quit after the season ended on Sunday.
"Romario will be player and coach until the end of the Guanabara Cup [the first half of the Carioca tournament]," Miranda said. "That is definite. Maybe he will continue a while longer. If the tribunal maintains the suspension, he will go to Dubai as coach. But I think the ban will be overturned."
"We'll speed up the tests, we'll accelerate our defense to try to help the tribunal to schedule [the trial]. That's what Romario wants," Paulo Reis, Vasco's vice president for legal affairs, told the Globo media Web site G1.
Finasteride is on the World Anti-Doping Agency's banned list because it can mask use of anabolic steroids. But Vasco asked the Brazilian soccer confederation to test the urine sample with a reagent available in Europe that would reveal whether Romario used steroids.
"The urine is still in the laboratory," Vasco physician Pedro Valente said on Thursday in an interview with the Rio de Janeiro newspaper O Globo. "Test it to find out if the finasteride masked anabolic steroids."
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