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No amicable separation for Algeria and Lucas Alcaraz – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa


by
Graeme Jackson

Thursday Oct 26, 2017. 10:30


Despite almost two weeks having passed since Algeria fired national team coach Lucas Alcaraz, no agreement on the separation has been reached.

The Algerian Football Federation (FAF) showed the Spanish coach the door earlier this month following a defeat to Cameroon in their penultimate 2018 World Cup qualifier.

The FAF moved quickly to appoint Rabah Madjer as Alcaraz’s replacement, and although this complication does not threaten the new coach’s position, it is nonetheless an awkward situation.

Le Buteur reports that FAF president Kheireddine Zetchi offered Alcaraz an amicable parting package, with the prospect of an extra two to three months salary thrown in if the parties agreed to a cancellation of the contract.

However, the Spaniard has refused this and now has the option of taking the dispute over what he views as an unfair dismissal to the world governing body FIFA.

The issue stems from the details of Alcaraz’s contract with the FAF, which states that his primary objective was the qualify the team to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.

This qualification campaign has seen only one round played in the final group stage, and Algeria got off to a positive start by beating Togo 1-0 back in June. The qualifiers will only resume in March next year.

As for the 2018 qualifiers – in which Algeria are guaranteed to finish bottom of their group and have been out of the running for Russia since last month – there was no stipulation in Alcaraz’s contract.

As a result, the axed coach is reportedly determined to fight his dismissal and win compensation back from the FAF.



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Algerian FA part ways with coach Lucas Alcaraz – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa


by
Phumzile Ngcatshe

Friday Oct 13, 2017. 13:30


Algeria have parted ways with coach Lucas Alcaraz just after failing to lead the Desert Foxes to the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Although the Federation of Algerian Football was pondering the decision to fire the Spanish manager, media reports indicate that he has been released.

Alcaraz is axed just before their clash against the Super Eagles of Nigeria in their final Group B game of the qualifiers next month.

FAF TO PUSH FOR ALCARAZ DISMISSAL BEFORE NIGERIA MATCH

Superdeporte.es reports that the coach, who has a win record of one in four games since taking over from George Leekens, has already returned back to Spain.

Algeria are out of the race to qualify for the World Cup after picking up just one point in five games in a group where they were viewed as favourites to book a spot in Russia.



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FAF to push for Alcaraz dismissal before Nigeria match – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa


by
Graeme Jackson

Tuesday Oct 10, 2017. 13:00


Algeria coach Lucas Alcaraz could well be relieved of his duties by the country’s Football Federation (FAF) even before their final World Cup qualifier against Nigeria next month.

The Spaniard was set to be allowed to see out Algeria’s failed qualification campaign, but the weekend defeat to Cameroon – the Fennec Foxes’ fourth in succession in Group B – has prompted the FAF to take a more drastic action, according to Le Buteur.

Alcaraz’s fate as Algeria’s coach was sealed last month when the team lost back-to-back matches against Zambia and was mathematically eliminated from contention for Russia 2018.

The FAF will have an executive meeting on Wednesday and it is expected that several influential members will petition president Kheireddine Zetchi to remove Alcaraz with immediate effect.

This would mean Algeria would head to their final 2018 qualifier against Nigeria next month with yet another new coach in charge.

Alcaraz received support from Cameroon coach Hugo Broos, who claims that the Spaniard should be given until the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations to prove himself.



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Guy Roux: Lucas Alcaraz is the wrong coach for Algeria – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa


by
Graeme Jackson

Thursday Sep 28, 2017. 11:00


Lucas Alcaraz is not the right coach for the Algerian national team, according to legendary French manager Guy Roux.

Spaniard Alcaraz has come under huge criticism since taking over the Fennec Foxes earlier this year, with calls for the Algerian Football Federation (FAF) to fire him following recent back-to-back defeats at the hands of Zambia which put them out of contention for next year’s World Cup.

Roux, who famously coached French club AJ Auxerre for over 40 years, was surprised at Algeria’s elimination from the Russia 2018 qualifiers and believes the Fennec Foxes have not thrived under Alcaraz because of the culture and language barriers.

The veteran French coach told Le Buteur that Algeria found themselves in an incredibly tough group (alongside Nigeria, Zambia and Cameroon), but still believes they under-performed given the talent at their disposal.

“I find that Algeria found itself in an ultra difficult group,” said Roux.

“Nigeria in football has a very old potential with qualifications at the World Cup and players of great value. Taribo West, whom I trained, but also players like [Jay-Jay] Okocha.

“Zambia won the CAN [Africa Cup of Nations] 2012 and has some very good players and Cameroon, who won the last CAN and who is also used to playing World Cups. It was not easy!”

Roux added, “On the choice of the coach, there is to be fault.

“In my opinion, it is easier to respect the cultural aspect. The Algerians are of French culture and speak for the majority French.

“So it is more desirable that their coach be an Algerian, for example, a former player, or a Frenchman.

“A Spanish or German coach, he is more likely to miss out on. He will not understand your players.”

Roux’s compatriot Rolland Courbis has been strongly linked with the Algerian post and the veteran backs the appointment of the former USM Alger manager.

“Courbis is a phenomenon. He trained in Algeria and knows the mentality of the Algerian player,” explained Roux.

“I think he won the cup there [Ed – Courbis won the 2013 Algerian Cup and 2013 UAFA Club Cup with USMA]. He is a man who will succeed one blow over two or four years.

“He is an extremely intelligent man. He also knows how to collaborate with journalists and this is very important in a country like Algeria where the fervor around football is enormous.”



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Alcaraz to remain for at least the next two matches – FAF president – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa


by
Graeme Jackson

Monday Sep 25, 2017. 13:00


Algeria’s under-fired coach Lucas Alcaraz will be in charge of the team for at least the next two matches, according to the country’s Football Federation (FAF) president Kheireddine Zetchi.

The Spanish coach has come in for major criticism following Algeria’s elimination from the 2018 World Cup qualifiers.

Yet Alcaraz will definitely be in charge for the Fennec Foxes’ remaining matches of their Group B campaign: away to Cameroon next month and at home to Nigeria in early November.

“I am convinced of the coach’s CV, but I am not convinced of the results of the Greens [national team]. It would be lying if I said the opposite. That’s why we’re going to let him work until the match against Nigeria,” Zetchi told ENTV, as quoted by Le Buteur.

The FAF boss has asked for patience with Alcaraz and pointed to the example of former coach Vahid Halihodzic.

The Bosnian oversaw a poor campaign at the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations in South Africa where Algeria finished bottom of their group, but went on to lead the team to World Cup qualification and a fine showing at the global finals in 2014.

“Why are we trying to sack the coach after each defeat? Why did not we sack Halilhodzic, after the South African CAN? I think stability is very important in football,” said Zetchi.

“Personally, I will look for the right solutions if I find that he is not the the situation. I will study these solutions with members of the BF. But I refuse to be rushed to sack him after only two games.”

Algeria will face Cameroon in their penultimate 2018 World Cup qualifier, with the match set for October 7 in Yaounde.



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Algeria’s Lucas Alcaraz backed by football federation boss – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa


by
Graeme Jackson

Tuesday Sep 05, 2017. 14:00


Algeria coach Lucas Alcaraz has been given the dreaded vote of confidence by the country’s Football Federation boss Kheireddine Zetchi.

The Spanish tactician came under fire from Fennec Foxes supporters after his side were beaten 3-1 by Zambia in a Group B World Cup qualifier in Lusaka on Saturday afternoon.

The result left Algeria on the verge of elimination in the race for Russia 2018, with leaders Nigeria looking likely to secure the one qualification berth assigned to the group.

Yet Alcaraz has been shielded from criticism by Zetchi, who says all focus must be placed on tonight’s return match against Chipolopolo in Constantine.

“We are not here to discuss the future of the coach,” the Algerian football boss is quoted by Star Africa.

“Responsibilities are shared. First of all, we’ll have to play Tuesday. Then we’ll do an analysis.

“But, in any case, there was never any question of getting a coach out after a defeat.

“It will be necessary to think of finding a selection capable of facing the challenges and especially on the African continent.”

Zetchi added, “It’s important to win at Constantine.

“The players are pros. We will finish the work by playing as seriously as possible.

“It is true that we will have to look for mental strength, which is not easy after such a defeat.”

The Algeria v Zambia match at Stade Mohamed Hamlaoui will kick-off at 21h30 CAT.



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Algerian coach Lucas Alcaraz talks down Zambia – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa


by
Phumzile Ngcatshe

Wednesday Aug 30, 2017. 11:00


Algeria national team coach, Lucas Alcaraz says he wants to get two wins over Zambia in their back-to-back 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers.

The Desert Warriors are on the road to Lusaka for the first leg this weekend, and the Spanish manager says his troops know what to do.

Speaking to FIFA.com, the coach said Algeria might not be favourites in the group, but can revive their fortunes if they collect full points against Wedson Nyirenda’s Chipolopolo.

“We are going to prepare in depth for the two matches against Zambia. The FIFA calendar dictates that our future hinges on those two games played in a space of just five days,” said Alcaraz.

MANE JOINS STURRIDGE AND FOWLER IN RECORD BOOKS

“The players and the staff know what they have to do, what is expected of them and the importance of these two matches.

“I need a lot of players for those two games and I am absolutely convinced that if we beat Zambia, then we will qualify for the World Cup.

“Obviously, we are not the favourites. But we have to do everything in our power to get as many points and wins as we can.

“We have to fight hard in every game to make sure there are no regrets at the end of it all.”

The encounter will be staged at the National Heroes Stadium on Saturday at 15:00 (CAT).

AfricanFootball.com will bring you a LIVE Play-By-Play of the match.



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