August 3, 2018 / 8:01 AM / 2 months ago

Soccer - Argentina name under-17 boss as interim coach

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Argentina have named current under-17 coach Lionel Scaloni as interim boss for upcoming friendlies against Guatemala and Colombia.

Soccer Football - Argentina Training - City Football Academy, Manchester, Britain - March 21, 2018 Argentina's Angel Di Maria and assistant coach Lionel Scaloni during training Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff

Scaloni, a former right back who also helped as assistant coach with the national side, replaces Jorge Sampaoli, who stood down last month after a disappointing World Cup in which Argentina were eliminated by France 4-3 in the round of 16.

“The AFA informs that after a meeting of the Executive Committee, Lionel Scaloni will coach the future friendlies along with his assistants Pablo Aimar and Martin Tocalli,” the Argentine Football Association (AFA) said in a one-line statement.

The association’s president Claudio Tapia told reporters they were going to take their time to appoint a permanent coach.

Argentina have had three different men in charge since Alejandro Sabella resigned in 2014 after taking the team to the final of the World Cup, where they lost to Germany in extra time.

Since then Gerardo Martino, Edgardo Bauza, and Sampaoli have all had spells at the helm but none have won any silverware and Argentina’s trophy drought now extends back to 1993, the last time they won the Copa America.

The two-time World Champions meet Guatemala in Los Angeles on Sept 7 and then face Colombia in New Jersey four days later.

Reporting by Andrew Downie; editing by Sudipto Ganguly

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