5 contenders to replace Edgardo Bauza as Argentina coach
Edgardo Bauza was sacked as Argentina coach on Monday, and we take a look at who could be in line to replace him.
Bauza coaxed Lionel Messi out of international retirement after taking the helm in the wake of the Copa America Centenario final defeat to Chile but has lasted less than nine months in the job.
A 2-0 defeat – without the suspended Messi – away at Bolivia in World Cup qualifying last month left Argentina outside of the automatic spots for a place in Russia.
The result piled the pressure on Bauza, who managed just three wins in his eight games in charge.
Automatic qualification for the 2018 World Cup remains a distinct possibility for Argentina, but who will the Argentine Football Association (AFA) entrust with the job?
#1 Jorge Sampaoli
Although it was Bauza who got the job last August, Sampaoli was the man the AFA really wanted.
Despite having already agreed to take over Sevilla from the 2016-17 season, Sampaoli was offered the position after Gerardo Martino stepped down in the wake of the Copa America Centenario final defeat to Chile.
A sense of responsibility to fulfil his pledge to the Andalusian club forced him to decline, but one season later and with sporting director Monchi heading for the exit he may well feel more comfortable in making the move.
However, having led Sevilla into the knockout stages of the Champions League and on a title charge that has petered out in recent weeks, a sense of unfinished business could encourage him to remain.