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Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 October 2007, 16:18 GMT 17:18 UK
Coach warns Burundi federation
By Piers Edwards
BBC Sport

Amrouche Adel
Adel grew up in the same district as Zinedine Zidane
Burundi coach Amrouche Adel has warned the country's football federation (FFB) that he will leave his post unless they improve their administration.

Adel is unhappy with the preparations before Burundi's 2-1 defeat in a Nations Cup qualifier in Mauritania.

The visitors arrived in Nouakchott just 20 hours before the match, forcing the coach to change his tactics since so many of his players were tired from travelling.

"I am going back to Burundi now and will be talking to the federation about our preparations and travel plans for this match," the Belgian coach told BBC Sport on Tuesday.

"They must arrange things better in future and if they do, I will stay with them until the 2010 World Cup but if not, I have offers from two other African national teams.

"The ball is now in their court and it's up to them - if they do not want to get serious, I will not work with them."

To emphasise the chaos surrounding Burundi's trip, the coach was speaking from the Senegalese capital Dakar where his squad arrived by road on Monday since the FFB could not find a flight home from Nouakchott.

Cause for optimism

Nonetheless, Adel, who grew up in the same area of Marseille as legendary French star Zinedine Zidane, believes he can lift Burundi to greater heights if given the proper assistance.
Emmanuel Gama
Emmanuel Gama is one of the youngest international players ever

"I think we have one of the youngest teams in Africa," the 39-year-old explained.

"But we got a good result against Egypt in last month's Nations Cup qualifier (0-0) so the players are beginning to have confidence in my philosophy.

"I believe I can make this team very good."

Defender Valery Nayaho, a 23-year-old who captains Jomo Cosmos in South Africa, is one man who believes Adel can raise Burundi's Fifa ranking of 110th place.

"If we stay with our current coach, we are going to keep this team for years and you are going to see in future what is going to happen," the dreadlocked Nayaho told BBC Sport.

Talented youngster

One man who could make a big impact on the future of Burundian football is forward Emmanuel Gama.

Aged just 15 years and three months, he became one of football's youngest-ever internationals when he took the field as a first-half substitute last Saturday.

"Even though Gama is young, he can do a lot of things and he is a player with the same qualities as Lomana LuaLua," explained Adel, who previously led Motema Pembe to championship success in LuaLua's home nation of DR Congo.

"We are going to look for an overseas academy, preferably in England as he speaks English, so that he can train well and learn good methods to enable him to play at the highest level."

Burundi finished third in Group Two of the recently-concluded 2008 Nations Cup qualifying campaign.


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