By Victor Kanayo
Jean Louis Gasset has resigned as head coach of the Ivory Coast national men team, mostly known as Elephants.
The Elephants are in a precarious situation as hosts of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), as they hope to qualify to the next round as one of the best third-placed finishers.
According to reports making rounds in Abidjan on Wednesday, coach Gasset reportedly presented his resignation on the day of the loss to Yacine Idriss Diallo, the president of the Ivorian Football Federation (FIF) which was accepted the next day by the Prime Minister, in charge of Sports, Robert Beugré Mambé.
The trio of coaches – former Ivorian internationals Émerse Faé, Alain Gouaméné (ex-Eléphants goalkeeper) and Guy Demel – will take charge of the Elephants who will know their fate in the competition later on Wednesday.
Coach Gasset becomes the fourth coach who led his team to the biennial competition and is currently without them.
First, it was Tanzania coach Adel Amrouche who incurred CAF ban and was almost immediately relieved of his duties by the country’s football federation.
Then followed the head of The Gambia, Tom Saintfiet, who resigned after his team lost all three group matches at the ongoing tournament.
On Tuesday, Ghana Football Federation sacked Chris Hughton after the country’s senior men National team failed to book a place in the knockout stage.
Uncertain Future For More Tacticians
Another coach whose future is uncertain is Algeria manager Djamel Belmadi whose team recorded a second successive group stage elimination after Mauritania stunned the North Africans 1-0 yesterday to leave their opponents last in the final standings.
According to sources in the Algerian locker room, Belmadi communicated his resignation to his players after Desert Foxes’ defeat against Mauritania and their early elimination from the competition.
After his team’s defeat last night in Bouaké against Angola, which confirmed their elimination from the competition, Tom Sainfiet the Gambia coach, did not wait to be told to leave, rather, he preferred to anticipate.
Boost For Super Eagles
Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Super Eagles have been handed a massive injury boost ahead of Saturday’s AFCON showdown against Cameroon as midfielder Alhassan Yusuf is expected to resume full team training on Wednesday evening.
The Antwerp star suffered a thigh injury in the team’s opening group game against Equatorial Guinea.
It was initially feared Alhassan will miss the rest of the tournament, but a scan later showed it was not a major injury.
He has been undergoing his recovery and so missed the group games against Cote d’Ivoire and Guinea Bissau.
Nigeria’s stand-in captain William Troost-Ekong is expected to resume training on Thursday.