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Ivory Coast sack manager Jean-Louis Gasset, despite AFCON qualification possibility

Ivory Coast have sacked manager Jean-Louis Gasset, despite the fact the team may yet progress to the last 16 of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).

Ivory Coast, the host nation of the tournament, are on the brink of elimination after two consecutive group-stage losses to Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea, the latter being a 4-0 defeat. They can still progress to the knockout stages of the competition but they will have to wait for the group stages to be completed to see if they can qualify as one of the best third-placed teams.

A statement from the Ivory Coast Football Federation (FIF) on social media said Gasset, and his assistant Ghislain Printant, have had their contracts terminated “due to insufficient results”.

Emerse Fae, another assistant coach, has taken interim charge of the team while the FIF works to hire a permanent successor to Gasset.

“The Federation Ivoirienne de Football expresses its regrets for the performance of the Elephants during the group phase of the CAN (AFCON) 2023,” the FIF statement said.

“However, it remains convinced of the potential of our football team, and calls for the unity of all for the upcoming events.”

Gasset, 70, took charge of the side in 2022, replacing Patrice Beaumelle. The Frenchman was previoulsy the assistant coach of the France men’s national team and Paris Saint-Germain.

Ivory Coast won their first game at AFCON, beating Guinea-Bissau 2-0 on January 13 thanks to goals from Seko Fofana and Jean-Philippe Krasso.

However, following a 1-0 defeat against Nigeria on January 18, and the damaging 4-0 defeat to Equatorial Guinea on January 21, their future participation in the tournament is no longer in their own hands.

Should they qualify, they will face Group B winners Cape Verde or the winner of Group C in the round of 16.

(Getty Images)

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