CAIRO – The Egyptian Football Association (EFA) announced on Thursday the appointment of Mexican Javier Aguirre as head coach of the national team on a four-year deal.
Aguirre replaces Argentinian Hector Cuper after his contract expired following the 2018 World Cup, where Egypt lost all three of their matches to crash out in the group stage.
The 59-year-old Aguirre has previously coached Mexico and Japan.
“When we chose Aguirre, we were keen that he has a long and honourable history, and he gave in Spain a great effort,” EFA chief Hany Abu Rida said at a press conference in Cairo, sitting next to the new coach.
Aguirre's most recent job was with the United Arab Emirates's Al Wahda from 2015-2017.
He will earn $120,000 a month with his two assistants, and was promised a $500,000 bonus if Egypt qualify for the 2022 World Cup.
“I am really honoured to be here, even though I have more than 20 years' work as a coach, even though I have four World Cups in my bag, it's the first time I will work in Africa. It will be a big, big challenge,” Aguirre said.
Aguirre coached Mexico at the 2002 World Cup and again at the 2010 tournament but has spent most of the last decade working in Spain, including spells at Osasuna - who he took to fourth place in La Liga in 2006 - Real Zaragoza, Espanyol and Atletico Madrid.
He was fired in 2015 by Japan in the wake of their poor Asian Cup title defence.
Other candidates who were considered for the Egypt job were Spaniard Quique Sanchez Flores, Bosnian Vahid Halilhodzic and Colombia's Jorge Luis Pinto, the EFA said on Twitter.
Agence France-Presse (AFP)