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Former Senegal midfielder Aliou Cisse appointed as new national team coach

Aliou Cisse urges Senegal on from the touchline
Cisse was previously an assistant coach with the squad and recently coach of Senegal's 2012 Olympic team.

Senegal appointed former midfielder Aliou Cisse as coach on Wednesday, a rare chance for a black African to take charge of one of the continent's top teams.

The Senegal Football Federation (FSF) said Cisse, who captained Senegal to the World Cup quarterfinals in 2002, has signed a four-year contract. His position will be evaluated in two years following the 2017 African Nations Cup, FSF vice-president Abdoulaye Sow said.

Cisse was previously an assistant coach with the national squad and most recently coach of Senegal's Olympic team at the London 2012 games.

At 38, Cisse is also young for an international coach. He replaced Alain Giresse, a Frenchman who left after Senegal's first-round elimination at the African Nations Cup in January.

Only three of the 16 teams at this year's continental championship had homegrown coaches -- South Africa, Zambia and Congo -- with most favouring European imports.

In 2013, Stephen Keshi of Nigeria became the first black African coach to win the Cup of Nations in more than 20 years.

Cisse played for clubs in France and England but his best achievement as a player was leading Senegal to the last eight at the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea, beating defending world champion France along the way.

Following six years as a player on Senegal's national team, he has been part of Senegal's coaching setup since 2012.


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