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Page last updated at 08:56 GMT, Friday, 17 October 2008 09:56 UK

Basile resigns as Argentina coach

Alfio Basile
The AFA says it is too soon to talk about Alfio Basile successor

Alfio Basile has resigned as coach of Argentina following Wednesday's shock 1-0 World Cup qualifying defeat by Chile in Santiago.

The result left Argentina seven points behind South American leaders Paraguay in their World Cup qualifying group.

Argentine Football Association spokesman Ernesto Cherquis Bialo said the 64-year-old announced his resignation for "personal reasons".

Basile took charge after the 2006 World Cup for his second spell in charge.

He had previously led Argentina to the 1994 World Cup in USA where they were knocked out in the second round by Romania, prompting him to quit.

Basile took the helm again when Jose Pekerman resigned and guided Argentina to the final of the Copa America in 2007, where they lost 3-0 to Brazil.

Argentina started their World Cup qualifying campaign with three victories but then endured a five-match winless streak.

I'm convinced I can coach the senior team. If it's my turn, I will take it

Sergio Batista

That ended with a 2-1 victory against Uruguay on Saturday but they were then beaten by Chile for the first time in 35 years.

Sergio Batista, who was part of the 1986 World Cup-winning side, is certain to be among the front-runners to replace Basile after coaching Argentina to gold at the 2008 Olympic Games.

"I'm convinced I can coach the senior team. If it's my turn, I will take it," said Batista.

River Plate boss Diego Simeone and Miguel Angel Russo, coach of league leaders San Lorenzo, are other potential candidates.

606: DEBATE

AFA president Julio Grondona admitted Basile's decision had caught him off-guard.

"I'm surprised," he said. "Basile told me he resigned for personal reasons. I don't know what those reasons are, time will tell.

"I wasn't expecting this. I guess he was feeling uncomfortable for some reason but if we look at our qualifying position, we were not too bad."

"We can't talk about the successor yet. It's too soon."


see also
Tim Vickery column
04 Aug 08 |  Football
Argentina name Basile as new boss
01 Aug 06 |  Internationals


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