Monday, April 22, 2024

Morocco’s Football Legend, Badou Zaki Becomes Sudan Coach

Badou Zaki

Morocco’s former goalkeeper Badou Zaki was named as coach of Sudan on Sunday, with his salary being paid by the Saudi Arabian FA as part of a co-operation agreement.

Zaki, 63, will take charge for an African Nations Cup qualifying double-header against Gabon on March 23 and 27.

Sudan have three points from two games, one point behind leaders Mauritania and Gabon. The top two teams will qualify automatically for the Nations Cup finals, which take place in the Ivory Coast in January 2024.

The Saudi Football Association will pay Zaki’s and his assistants salaries, according to a co-operation agreement with Sudanese Federation, the Sudanese News Agency reported.

The agreement, signed last week, includes a plan for Saudi funding of the rebuilding of Sudan’s FA building, updating the Olympic Stadium and general financial help.

The Saudis will also help with external camps and the training of referees, coaches and media.

Zaki previously coached Morocco and led them to the final of the 2004 African Nations Cup, where they lost to Tunisia. He has had a varied coaching career at club level in his home country, including winning the championship with Wydad Casablanca.

Badou Zaki at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico

He made his name as the goalkeeper who helped Morocco to become the first African country to advance past the first round at the World Cup when they beat Portugal and drew with England and Poland in Mexico in 1986.

He was later voted African Footballer of the Year for 1986, when it was still awarded by France Football magazine, and went on to play for Mallorca in Spain

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