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Last Updated: Monday, 3 July 2006, 16:26 GMT 17:26 UK
Pekerman resolute on resignation
Jose Pekerman
Pekerman took over as Argentina coach in September 2004
Jose Pekerman has reiterated his desire to quit as Argentina coach, despite the fact that his resignation has not yet been accepted.

Argentine Football Federation president Julio Grondona has said he is still undecided whether to release Pekerman.

But the 56-year-old, whose side were knocked out by Germany in the quarter-finals, said: "This is over.

"We said we'd play seven games and did not, so I failed. We were close but not close enough. This spell is over."

Grondona is reportedly annoyed that Pekerman announced his intention to leave without discussing it with him first.

And Pekerman conceded: "If he is annoyed, he is right, because the truth is that I didn't talk to him before.

It was a big mistake of the coach

Leonardo on Pekerman's decision to take off Riquelme

"I think that was a mistake and I told him that when I went back to the dressing room."

The former Under-20 boss took over the Argentine national side in 2004, but immediately declared he would resign after his side went out to Germany on penalties.

"You have to make a decision and I'm convinced I've done everything in my reach and it's time to look for something else," he said.

However, Grondona countered: "Nothing is finalised. I am going to think about that in Buenos Aires, when it is quieter.

"No team played better than Argentina in the World Cup. We just lacked luck."

Pekerman was widely criticised after the defeat, in particular for his decision to take off Juan Roman Riquelme with Argentina leading 1-0 going into the final stages.

Miroslav Klose's equaliser came eight minutes after Pekerman took off playmaker Riquelme and former Brazil star and BBC pundit Leonardo said: "It was a big mistake of the coach.

"You can't change the game like that when it is 1-0. Riquelme is an important player in the team.

"It's a big sign to the team that you are to defend and you always lose like that."

Fellow pundit Alan Hansen added: "I think the coach blew it. They got the goal and took off Riquelme at a stage when it was tailor-made for someone to put their foot on the ball and pass it.

"I think if he'd stayed on they would have won."

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