Qatar coach sidesteps question over future
Coach Djamel Belmadi deflected questioning about his future with trigger-happy Qatar on Wednesday as he faced a must-win Group C game against heavyweights Iran at the Asian Cup.
Sydney: Coach Djamel Belmadi deflected questioning about his future with trigger-happy Qatar on Wednesday as he faced a must-win Group C game against heavyweights Iran at the Asian Cup.
The Algerian won the Gulf Cup with the future World Cup hosts in November but his Asian Cup plans threaten to unravel after last week`s 4-1 reverse to neighbours UAE.
Despite the Gulf Cup win Belmadi, who was appointed last March, will be aware of Qatar`s itchy trigger finger with 30 different coaches taking the hot seat since 1990.
"You would have to ask the Qatari football federation," he said at a press conference. "I`m talking about the game tomorrow. I don`t have anything to say about that."
Belmadi said his biggest job had been to lift Qatar`s downcast players after they lost big to UAE despite opening the scoring through "Qatari Maradona" Khalfan Ibrahim.
"We played like a friendly game. It wasn`t our day. Especially after the good competition we had at the Gulf Cup, we expected something different," he said.
"But now it`s in the past and we need a reaction. Of course we are all disappointed and the players more than anyone. They have now the ambition to make a different game tomorrow."
Belmadi added that it was a "decisive" match for Qatar against Carlos Queiroz`s Iran, who contested a World Cup last year. But he said the task was not beyond his players.
"I know this group that I have. I chose them and I know that we are able to change things and I know that we can do much much better, even when things look difficult, for some people impossible. For us it`s not impossible," he said.