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Ivory Coast fire Gasset despite making last 16

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Ivory Coast
Jean Gasset has been fired after the Ivorians lost 4-0 to Equatorial Guinea
  • Gasset was fired after the drubbing by Equatorial Guinea
  • Ivory Coast have sneaked into the last 16
  • The group stage has claimed two more coaches

Ivory Coast have fired head coach Jean Louis Gasset despite advancing to the round of 16 at the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).

The decision was reached after Ivory Coast’s Les Elephants suffered one of their biggest defeats at home, a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Equatorial Guinea in their final Group A match.

The 70-year-old coach had been in charge since 2022, when he took over from compatriot Patrice Beaumelle after the team failed to qualify for the World Cup.

“The contracts of coach Jean-Louis Gasset and his assistant Ghislain Printant are terminated due to insufficient results.” A statement from the Ivorian Football Federation (FIF) said.

The statement from Ivory Coast further added; “The Ivorian Football Federation expresses its regret for the progress of the Elephants during the group stage of AFCON 2023. However, it remains convinced of the potential of our football team, and calls on everyone to unite for all the challenges ahead.”

Ivory Coast stared at the possibility of missing out on a place in the last 16 at the tournament which they are hosting after losing two of their three group stage matches.

However, they were saved from that embarrassment by Morocco, who beat Zambia 1-0 in their final Group F match, a result that meant the Ivorians sneaked in as the last of the four best placed third spot finishers.

Ivory Coast to take on Senegal in last 16

They will take on defending champions Senegal, another massive task for them, in the last 16.

Meanwhile, the grueling group stage at the 2023 AFCON has claimed two more coaches with Algeria firing Djamel Belmadi while Jalel Kadri has left his role at the Tunisian national team.

Ivory Coast

Djamel Belmadi has been at the helm at Algeria for five years

Belmadi was fired after successive failures to make it out of the group stages at the AFCON.

Les Verts failed to make it into the knockout phases of the 2023 AFCON after finishing off winless in their group. They also failed to make it into the next round in Cameroon in 2021.

Belmadi has struggled to replicate what he achieved with Algeria in 2019, when he led them to the AFCON title in Egypt for the first time in close to 30 years.

Belmadi’s exit came a day after the Desert Foxes’ shock 1-0 loss to Mauritania.

“I met with the national coach to talk about the consequences of this bitter exclusion, and we reached an amicable agreement to dissolve the association and break the contract that links the coach with the Algerian Football Federation,” a statement from Walid Sadi, the Algeria FA boss, on social platform X stated.

He adds; “We promise fans and admirers of the national team that what happened is the beginning of a radical change and even a real revolution at the level of the Algerian national team in order to create an ideal environment to work and build on this stumble in order to restore our position continentally and internationally.”

Belmadi, who skippered Algeria at the 2004 AFCON was hired at the start of 2019, and leaves his post after five years.

Kadri leaves his role as Tunisia coach


Jalel Kadri was required to help Tunisia into the semi finals in the least

Meanwhile, Tunisia’s head coach Jalel Kadri has announced that he is leaving his role after his side failed to make it into the round of 16.

The Carthage Eagles were held to a barren draw by South Africa in their last group E match, a result that meant they finished bottom of the table and fail to make the knockout phases.

“My mission at the head of the Tunisian national team is now over,” Kadri is reported to have said during a TV interview after their match against South Africa.

Kadri was appointed after the 2021 Cup of Nations where they reached the quarter finals, replacing Mondher Kebaier. The 52-year-old led the Carthage Eagles to qualification for the 2022 World Cup, where the North Africans went out in the group stage.

When the Carthage Eagles failed to make it past the group stage at the 2022 World Cup – despite pulling off a shock win over then defending champions France – he offered his resignation.

However, the Tunisian football federation (FTF) rejected it and instead extended his contract for 12 more months.

Speaking after the draw with South Africa, Kadri said his contract would automatically expire because Tunisia had failed to reach the semi-finals, which was the minimum requirement of the FTF.

“This is my decision and in my contract,” he said after the game.

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