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CFA to find local coach for national team

THE Chinese Football Association (CFA) has kicked off a recruitment process to find a local coach for the men's national team as Shen Xiangfu was tipped as the favorite to take over the rudderless outfit.

The 51-year-old Shen, the incumbent manager of the Guangzhou Yiyao club which was promoted to the top flight last season, was confident of his chance to be appointed.

"I gleaned a lot of experience when coaching the Olympic team for the Athens Olympic Games qualifiers. I failed that time, but the lessons I got will help me succeed this time," he said.

"The national team is in a beleaguered situation and the managerial position now means more responsibilities than honors. In saying this I don't mean to curry favors with anybody," he added.

The Guangzhou club has offered their backing to Shen.

"If Shen is appointed as the national team coach, we are sure he could manage to combine that role with his club commitment," said a club spokesman.

Gao Hongbo, the former head coach of Changchun Yatai club, and Yin Tiesheng, who guided China as caretaker coach for their two Asian Cup qualifiers earlier this year, were considered the other two serious contenders.

The CFA will draw up a shortlist of the candidates and then will put them through some exams and interviews. They are expected to unveil the new head coach early in March.


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