Nabil Maaloul and Aliou Cisse leading the way for African coaches

Friday June 22 2018

Nabil Maaloul and Aliou Cisse leading the way for African coaches

Photo montage of Tunisia's national team coach Nabil Maaloul and his Senegalese counterpart Aliou Cisse.  

By North Star Network

The World Cup 2018 features five African nations in the tournament. Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal and Nigeria are representing the continent in Russia. But, despite five African teams being on hand, just two of the nations are managed by African coaches. Egypt, Morocco and Nigeria have all called upon foreign managers to lead their national teams.

Tunisia and Senegal have both put their trust in coaches from other continents. The expectations may be the same for all five nations, but the excitement and connection Tunisia and Senegal have to their managers is far different Nabil Maaloul played 74 times for Tunisia during his senior international career. The midfielder spent a decade with the national team as a player. Maaloul never got to play in a World Cup. His time with the national team came in between the country qualifying in 1978 and 1998.

Maaloul has worked in football management since 1997. He coached in Tunisia's domestic league with several teams and oversaw Tunisia's Olympic team in 2004. Appointed Tunisia manager in 2013, Maaloul was on hand for an unsuccessful World Cup 2014 qualifying campaign. He resigned after missing the finals only to turn up in Kuwait as the national team boss. He had success with the Kuwaiti team, but due to the nation’s side's suspension by FIFA, Kuwait was unable to compete for a place in Russia this summer.

Maaloul returned to Tunisia in April 2017. His work as manager led the side past the final hurdles to reach the World Cup. It was only the second time in Tunisia's history that a Tunisian coach had led them to the promise land of the World Cup. The last time it happened was 1978. Hence the fact they are one of the team with the highest odds to win the tournament.

The nation has never reached the knockout round and according to Marca Apuestas, it will be complicated this year looking at their opponents in the group stage. You still can use your bonusbet365 if you want to try your luck on one of the biggest surprises in sport history. Tunisia’s odd to win the tournament is 1000!

However, you can also take advice from specialized websites if you want to bet on Tunisia for this World Cup.

Senegal manager Aliou Cisse is relatively young, 42 years old. Yet the Senegalese manager has made history leading Senegal to only their second World Cup tournament. The only other time Senegal made the World Cup was in 2002 and Cisse was the captain of the team. 16 years ago, they succeeded and beat France even though the team was the favourite of the tournament.

The 2002 tournament saw Cisse act as the team's leader on the field. This year he will be the man overseeing things from the sidelines. The former defender and midfielder hung up his football boots in 2009. Three years later he began his coaching career.

Cisse has only worked within the Senegal national team setup and has moved his way up to the national team manager role. He began his coaching career as an assistant to the under-23 team before taking over the side in 2013. Following his success at the U-23 level, Cisse was given the senior team coaching role in 2015.

In 2017, Cisse led Senegal to the quarterfinals of the Africa Cup of Nations. The side finished fifth overall. He has taken his desire to win as a player with the national team and parlayed it into success as a manager. Even though the 1xbet odds tends to see them eliminated in the group stage, they could find their way into the round of 1/16 under Cisse’s management. They are the only African team to have scored a goal at the tournament so far.

Cisse and Maaloul are leading the charge for African coaches to get their chance. The two have been successful and there is every chance the two managers could lead their teams into the knockout stage of the World Cup 2018, even though they do not have the best African players that haveplayed amazing football.

This story is sponsored by North Star Network