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Page last updated at 11:30 GMT, Thursday, 23 October 2008 12:30 UK

Neveu rejects call to resign

By Patrice Citera
BBC Sport, Kinshasa

Patrice Neveu
Neveu was appointed in March on a two-year contract

DR Congo coach Patrice Neveu has rejected a call from Europe-based striker Shabani Nonda for him to resign.

The Leopards were eliminated from the 2010 World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers earlier this month after a defeat to Malawi.

Nonda, who plays for Galatasaray in Turkey and has been a key player for DR Congo, was left out of the squad for that game.

He appeared on national television after the match demanding that Neveu step down due to poor results.

After eight consecutive appearances at the Nations Cup finals up to 2006, the defeat meant that DR Congo will miss out for the second time in a row.

But Neveu, who took Guinea to the quarter-finals of the 2006 Nations Cup, is not willing to be blamed for the Leopard's failure.

"I am so deceived by Nonda's statement since he is a professional footballer who knows how the team works and he knows the state in which I found the team when I took over," Neveu told BBC Sport.

I want to focus on training local coaches and youth development

Patrice Neveu
"Nonda is a player that I do appreciate a lot and I understand that he may have been frustrated by my decision to drop him for the Malawi game.

"I don't think Nonda's statement will have any impact on the future of my job, because the president of the FA had a talk with the players telling them that they should have confidence in me.

"I also want to stay because I've submitted a project for the development of DR Congo football - I want to focus more on training local coaches and youth development."

Neveu has 17 months left of a two-year contract, and there will be no competitive football for DR Congo during that time.

It would be an expensive exercise for the FA to fire him, as they would have to buy out the rest of his contract.

see also
Neveu confirmed as DRC coach
27 Mar 08 |  African
2010 World Cup Qualifiers
11 Oct 08 |  African

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