Giovanni Trapattoni camp denies any Ivory Coast deal

Former Ireland manager reportedly reached agreement with African nation this week

Former Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni not heading to the Ivory Coast. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Former Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni not heading to the Ivory Coast. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Fri, Feb 21, 2014, 18:19

Sources close to former Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni have rubbished reports claiming the veteran coach has signed a contract with World Cup finallists Ivory Coast.

A report in prestigious sports daily ‘Gazzetta Dello Sport’ today claimed the coach, 75 next month, has just signed a four-year contract with Ivory Coast, which would initially involve working with youth team players but which could see him take over the senior national team after this summer’s World Cup finals in Brazil.

Furthermore, the report suggested that Trap’s right hand man in the Ireland set-up, Marco Tardelli, would also be working as his number two with the African team. The Gazzetta report stressed his appointment would have no impact on the current Ivory Coast coach, former Parma midfielder Sabri Lamouchi. Ivory Coast are are grouped with Colombia, Greece and Japan in the first round of this summer’s World Cup.

Contacted today by the Irish Times, a source said whilst it is true that Trapattoni met with the Italian Honorary Consul to the Ivory Coast in Milan this week, no deal had been concluded. Furthermore, the consul, Fabrizio Iseni, was in no way delegated to ‘negotiate” on behalf of the Ivory Coast Football Federation. Although it appears that some sort of tentative negotiations had been opened with Trapattoni, his advisors this evening categorically ruled out any future negotiations or deal with the Ivory Coast.

This latest narrative in the seemingly never-ending and storied career of doyen maestro Trapattoni does not necessarily mean that he will not be in Brazil this summer. It is widely expected the loquacious Trap, well-known for his colourful and often grammatically incorrect language, will be working for an Italian TV station during the finals.

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