AFCON AFCON 2023: Belmadi Tells Algeria Players He’ll Quit

Following Algeria’s elimination from the Africa Cup of Nations finals on Tuesday, state-run Algerie Presse Service claimed on Wednesday that coach Djamel Belmadi had informed his team he was resigning.

The news agency stated that Belmadi made the declaration in the changing room following Algeria’s shocking 1-0 loss to Mauritania in Bouake on Tuesday.

The tournament is already full of shocking upsets.

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Neither Belmadi nor the Algerian football organisation had issued an announcement.

When questioned about his future, he had earlier said to reporters during the post-match press conference, “When we return to the country I will tell you.”

The Algerians were scheduled to leave Bouake later this Wednesday.

Belmadi is the third coach to be fired in as many hours at the Ivory Coast tournament, following the resignation of Tom Saintfiet of the Gambia and the announcement of Chris Hughton’s dismissal by Ghana.

Algeria won the 2019 Cup of Nations in Egypt under Belmadi’s leadership, but since then, his team has placed last in their first-round group twice.

Additionally, they were unable to advance to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after losing to Cameroon at home in a play-off due to the away goals rule.

Belmadi, who is well-known for his expressive touch-line gestures and outspoken personality, has managed to hang onto his job in spite of the recent failures. Algeria was considered a strong favourite to win the Ivory Coast Cup of Nations due to their strong team.

However, they were held to draws by Burkina Faso and Angola in their first Group D matches before losing for the first time ever against Mauritania, who were placed 75 places lower.

“The only thing that was missing was a goal. Whenever they got a half chance they scored, whenever we got a chance we didn’t. That’s the mystery of football,” Belmadi told a press conference after the Mauritania match.

After taking over at Manchester City and Paris St. Germain during his club career, the 47-year-old Frenchman—who also played for Algeria—has only lost seven of his 67 games in command since taking over in 2018. Of his games in charge, he won 43.

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