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World Cup

De Sa uncertain of future after Iran's early Fifa World Cup exit

1:33 PM EST 12/12/22
Roger De Sa, Carlos Queiroz, Egypt, January 2022
Former Orlando Pirates coach Roger de Sa is “not sure” about his and head coach Carlos Queiroz's future with the Iran national team.
  • De Sa was Iran assistant coach at the World Cup
  • Iran failed to get past the group stage
  • That has placed De Sa's future in doubt

WHAT HAPPENED? Iran could not reach the knockout phase of the 2022 Fifa World Cup after they finished third in Group B. This was after a group-stage campaign that included a 6-2 defeat by England, a 2-0 victory over Wales and a 1-0 loss to the United States. Iran assistant coach De Sa admits they are now facing an uncertain future, saying they will engage in talks with Iran football authorities in January.

WHAT DE SA SAID: “We are not sure about our future with the Iran national team but we will resume our talks with the federation in January. We hope to continue with the team next year,” said De Sa as per Times Live.

“We were drawn in a very difficult group and our players were always going to find it very tough. We also did not have enough time because some of our players were arriving days before the games started.

“It was a different World Cup with so many different dynamics compared to other tournaments. Our team was made up of mostly local players, but it was an important learning experience for the boys playing against England's superstars they see in the English Premier League, the stars of the US and against players such as Gareth Bale [of Wales].

“We wanted to make history by qualifying for the knockout stage but we could not get over the line. It is very humid and the tempo of the matches is dropping [in the latter stages of the tournament]. There is air-conditioning at the stadiums but it is only switched on during matches. Some players are going to start struggling and that’s when you start seeing the big boys coming out on top.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: After reaching the Africa Cup of National final with Egypt earlier this year and then coaching at the World Cup might have placed De Sa as a future candidate for the Bafana Bafana job. He is one of the South African coaches in jobs overseas like Manchester United’s Benni McCarthy, Pitso Mosimane, Steven Pienaar and Bradley Carnell.

WHAT NEXT FOR DE SA? De Sa now waits to hear from the Football Federation Islamic Republic of Iran when they discuss his future in January.