Ivory Coast in no rush for new coach

By Oluwashina OkelejiBBC Sport
Ivory Coast caretaker coach Ibrahim Kamara
Ibrahim Kamara has been caretaker coach of Ivory Coast since Marc Wilmots left in November

The Ivory Coast Football Federation (FIF) wants to find the right man to be the new Elephants' coach and are not rushing to appoint someone who will be paid for 'doing nothing'.

Six months after his exit, the two-time African champions are looking for a successor to former boss, the Belgian Marc Wilmots.

"When we mutually terminated Marc Wilmots' contract we had to pay him off, but we've still not paid him - so we cannot afford to hire another coach," FIF vice-president Sory Diabate said at a press conference in Abidjan.

"If we appoint one right now, he will be paid to do nothing, so the plan is to name the right coach in June.

"It's a good time because the team will play two friendlies then to prepare for the 2019 African Cup of Nations qualifiers scheduled for September."

Interim manager Ibrahim Kamara led the 2015 continental champions in last month's friendly fixtures against Togo (2-2 draw) and Moldova (2-1 win) in France.

As defending champions Ivory Coast suffered an embarrassing group stage exit at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations tournament and failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

"Interested coaches have submitted their applications and we did not close the door on anyone," added Diabate.

"To win in Africa in 2019 is not a priority, We know there is enough quality in our team, so our goal is to build a solid foundation for the 2021 and 2023 Nations Cup tournaments and the 2022 Fifa World Cup."

The faltering Elephants, who lost 3-2 at home to Guinea in their opening Group H encounter last June, will resume qualifiers for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in September with a trip to Rwanda.

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