Legendary striker Andriy Shevchenko Monday turned down an offer to coach the Ukrainian national team.
Shevchenko was offered the post last week with Ukraine’s top football official comparing his coaching potential to that of Pep Guardiola, who won 14 trophies in four years as Barcelona boss.
“I think that, at the moment, the opportunity to lead the Ukrainian national team is something of a hasty step for me,” Shevchenko said on the Ukrainian Football Federation (UFF) website.
“I hope that the management of the UFF treats my decision with understanding.”
Shevchenko, who retired after captaining Ukraine at Euro 2012, their first home tournament, suggested he was prepared to advise the team if approached by football officials in the future.
The post became vacant in late September when Oleg Blokhin signed for Dynamo Kiev. Blokhin was a renowned striker for the Soviet national side and coached Ukraine at Euro 2012, where he showed a strong bond with his star striker Shevchenko.
With a Champions League and a Serie A title to his name as well as five Ukrainian titles with Dynamo, 36-year-old Shevchenko was one of the world's best players at his peak and is the all-time top scorer for Ukraine with 48 goals in 111 appearances.
Ukraine have not won any of their first three World Cup 2014 qualifiers and are fifth in their group.