Argentina sack national team coach Bauza

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Buenos Aires, April 11 (IANS) Edgardo Bauza has been sacked as the coach of Argentina’s national team after a poor run of results, the President of the Argentinian Football Association (AFA) said.

The announcement came less than two weeks after Argentina lost 0-2 to Bolivia in La Paz, a result that left them in danger of missing next year’s World Cup, reports Xinhua news agency.

“I have informed Bauza that he is no longer coach of the national team,” AFA chief Claudio Tapia told reporters on Monday.

He added that a press conference would be held on Tuesday to explain the details of Bauza’s departure.

Among those touted as possible candidates for the vacant position are Sevilla manager Jorge Sampaoli and Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone.

Bauza, who replaced Gerardo Martino as coach in August, led Argentina to three wins, two draws and three defeats.

The loss to Bolivia saw the two-time World Cup winners drop to fifth in the 10-team South America CONMEBOL standings with four games remaining.

Argentina’s plight has been made worse by a four-match suspension handed to Barcelona forward Lionel Messi for abusing an assistant referee. The AFA have said they will appeal the decision.

Only the top four teams at the end of the CONMEBOL qualifying tournament will earn an automatic slot for the World Cup to be hosted Russia. The fifth-ranked side will advance to a playoff against the top nation from Oceania.

–IANS

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