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Al Wasl offer Maradona assurances

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 18 Jun 2012

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New Al Wasl chairman Mohammad Ahmad bin Fahad has quashed rumours coach Diego Maradona is set to be sacked.

Speculation was rife on Sunday the 51-year-old coach would be dismissed by the newly appointed board after a mass resignation of directors last week.

Maradona’s first season of a two-year contract at Al Wasl was disappointing, as the club finished eighth in the United Arab Emirates Pro-league.

Al Wasl also lost the Gulf Clubs Championship final on penalties after winning the first leg 3-1 away from home. They crashed out of the President’s and Emirates Cups at the quarter-final stage.

However, Bin Fahad moved to dismiss the rumours on Sunday, and said Maradona would remain in charge for next term.

“Maradona is the head coach of the Al Wasl Club, he has a contract with us and he will continue for the next season,” he told reporters.

“He will have complete authority over the programme for the next season and … there is nothing more I can say on the issue.

“He is continuing his position and there is no change in his position.”

Al Wasl president Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum had told UAE TV he wanted plenty of changes for the 2012/13 season after a trophyless 2011/12 campaign.

“I have asked the new committee to remove the negatives at the club next season and not forget that the next season will be tougher because there are more teams competing for the title,” he said.

“Eighth place is simply unacceptable and I would never dream of something like that. We had a goal to be among the top four last season.

“We have to repair the situation within the club and I apologise to the public because we did not give them what they deserved, we hope the new administration will put a smile back on the faces of our fans.”

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