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World Cup

Morocco coach Regragui: Impossible that Manchester City or Barcelona will hire an Arab coach

20:50 GMT+4 09/12/2022
Walid Regragui Morocco.
Morocco coach Walid Regragui believes it is not possible for an Arab coach to get a job at the world’s top clubs like Manchester City or Barcelona.
  • Regragui feels Arab coaches have no chance at top European clubs
  • Morocco coach bemoans obsession with experience over skills
  • Former Wydad tactician wants to change that perception in Qatar

WHAT HAPPENED? Ahead of his side’s World Cup quarter-final clash against Portugal on Saturday, Regragui explained how top European clubs overlook Arab coaches because of their lack of experience yet they have skills, something he is keen to change by leading his side past the Selecao at the Al Thumama Stadium.

WHAT DID HE SAY? “This question is probably best asked to the European clubs,” Regragui said at Friday’s pre-match press conference as quoted by The Athletic.

“Why don’t they hire Arab coaches? Maybe it’s a cultural question, maybe it’s a mentality.

“Today, I think it’s impossible that Manchester City or Barcelona will hire an Arab coach, they don’t even think about it, as if we’re not worthy, or ignorant or incapable of such a task.

“However, there’s moments in history that make people change their mind, but it’s on us as African and Arab people to change history. At a certain point, this could happen.”

“Ten years I am a coach, nobody looked at me. ‘No, it is impossible, he does not have the experience. Let’s look at somebody else’. I’m in the quarter-final. Explain this miracle.”

“When people talk about experience, experience doesn’t matter, it’s skills. It doesn’t matter about your background, religiously or culturally speaking where you’re from. It’s about skills. If you’re not worthy, you don’t have the skills, you can leave.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Regragui has impressed since taking over in August, going seven matches unbeaten while conceding just once, an own goal against Canada, at the World Cup.

The former Morocco international took charge of the Atlas Lions after leading Wydad Casablanca to the league and Caf Champions League double and has shown his tactical acumen in Qatar, topping a group that had Croatia and Belgium, before eliminating Spain in the Round of 16.

Morocco are in their maiden quarter-final and can make further history by becoming the first African country to ever reach the World Cup semi-finals with a victory.

WHAT’S NEXT? Regragui will be hoping for further glory when his charges take on Portugal at the Al Thumama Stadium on Saturday.