Morocco Wants Rohr To Replace Renard As Atlas Lions Coach

July 22, 2019
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 Gernot Rohr

Super Eagles’ Coach, Gernot Rohr is at a dilemma whether to accept Morocco’s overtures or continue managing Nigeria’s young team ahead of the 2021 African Cup of Nations and the 2020 World Cup qualifiers, which begin later this month.

Herve Renard, who led Morocco to the Egypt 2019 African Cup of Nations threw in the towel after the Atlas Lions’ failure to move beyond the second round of the competition, forcing the North Africans to begin a search for capable replacement.

A source close to Rohr told The Guardian that Morocco has approached the Franco/German with a view to getting him to take over their national team.

According to the source, Rohr, who has fallen out of favour with Nigerians following the unimpressive performance of the Super Eagles, is weighing his options and consulting with his friends before arriving at a decision.

“Don’t forget that he still has an existing contract with Nigeria, which he cannot break easily because of the financial implications.

“He has a close relationship with his players and top officials of the NFF hence his reluctance to quit Nigeria. But you can never say never.”

Renard, who won AFCON with Zambia (2012) and Cote d’Ivoire (2015), had been in charge since February 2016.

“It is time for me to close this long and beautiful chapter of my life,” said the Frenchman, 50.

In a statement on social media, Renard said he was “not without some emotion and sadness”, adding: “It is an inevitable decision taken well before AFCON 2019.

“I took this decision after having – of course – carefully considered [it]. It is therefore irreversible.”

Renard took Morocco from 81st in the Fifa world rankings to 47th.

He led them to two Africa Cup of Nations tournaments, and to the World Cup in Russia in 2018 – the first time the Atlas Lions had played at the global event for 20 years.

His hopes of winning a third AFCON title were dashed in Egypt, and Renard admitted it was not the outcome he had expected.

“We had all hoped [for] better for the Afcon 2019 in Egypt. But this is football – it gives birth to the wildest hopes (after three wins in the first round [for the] first time in Afcon final tournament for Morocco), and brings us hard to the reality of a too-quick elimination on penalties.”

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