Fri, February 06, 2009
Sports > Soccer

Brazilian Vieira sacked by Asian champions Iraq

2009-02-06 09:31:04 GMT2009-02-06 17:31:04 (Beijing Time)  China Daily

Iraq's national team coach Jorvan Vieira of Brazil looks on during their Gulf Cup soccer match against Oman in Muscat January 7, 2009. [Agencies]

BANGKOK - Jorvan Vieira, who led Iraq to a surprise Asian Cup triumph in 2007, has been sacked after his team's poor performance at last month's Gulf Cup.

"The federation has found it appropriate to dismiss the coach for his lack of success in leading the team in the 19th Gulf Cup," Najeh Hamud, vice-president of the Iraqi Football Association, told reporters in Baghdad.

The Brazilian, however, was unaware he had been fired when contacted by told Reuters on Friday. "I know nothing about that," Vieira said by telephone from Morocco. "The Iraq FA told me to return after the country's elections.

"It's okay. This is the life of the football coach. It's normal that this kind of thing happens to us."

He added: "With the Iraq team, you never know what can happen."

Despite inheriting a team in total disarray, Vieira led the rag-tag team to a fairytale victory in the Asian Cup but quit immediately after, citing stress suffered as a result of disorganisation and sectarian infighting in the squad.

He said he would have to be "crazy" to return but did so last September after being sacked by Iranian club Sepahan.

His second stint with Iraq ended in misery when his side finished bottom of their group in the Gulf Cup, won by hosts Oman.

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