By Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
The Algerian Football Federation (FAF) has placed former coach of Belgium, Marc Wilmots on top of its wish list for the 2018 World Cup showdown between Nigeria and Algeria in Uyo on November 12.
The other favourite is Rolland Courbis, who coached Niger in 2012 and was recently in charge of French club, Stade Rennaias. The former defender is also familiar with Algeria having coached local club USM Alger between 2012 and 2013.
Algeria which is in a tough Africa qualifying Group B in the race to Russia 2018 along Zambia, Cameroun and Nigeria, has been left with an Mount Everest to climb, following Serbian Milovan Rajevac’s departure in the wake of the 1-1 home draw with Cameroun.
Various media reports in Algeria last night said that FAF President, Mohamed Raouraoua, met Wilmots in Brussels on Thursday to sound him out on the prospect of the national team job, while he held further discussions in Paris the following day with Courbis.
The board of FAF is expected to announce a new coach as soon as possible after studying the reports of the technical committee to galvanise the Fennecs preparations for the must-win clash against old adversaries, Nigeria.
Wilmots, who was at the helms of Belgium Euro 2016 campaign in France where they were eliminated in the quarter final by Wales, is reported to have demanded a monthly salary of 100,000 Euros from FAF to take the plunge with Algeria.
The two technicians have been presented with a mandate to qualify Algeria for the 2018 World Cup and at least a quarter final berth at next year’s Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon.
But there are fears that Algeria may not be in position to afford a wage bill of 100,000 Euroes because of decline in government revenue arising from the sharp fall in the international prices of crude oil, the mainstay of Algeria’s economy.
Apart from that Algeria is competing with German club Schalke 04 in the race to lure Wilmot and may match the Belgian’s monetary demands.