Rigobert Song, a former Liverpool defender, is poised to be named Cameroon’s head coach at the country’s president’s request.
The 45-year-old will succeed Toni Conceicao, who guided the national team to third place in the Africa Cup of Nations in January.
Song is the most capped player in the country, having made 137 appearances for the Indomitable Lions.
Cameroon, according to a statement, need “a new breath.”
“On the President of the Republic’s direct orders, Mr Antonio Conceicao, the coach of the men’s national football team, has been replaced by Rigobert Song,” Cameroon’s sports minister Narcisse Mouelle Kombi said.
“The Cameroonian Football Federation (Fecafoot) is invited to take the necessary measures to ensure the swift and orderly execution of these extremely stringent regulations.”
The appointment would be rare, as Fifa statutes require that all member associations be autonomous and free of political influence.
Conceicao guided Cameroon to the World Cup qualifying play-offs, and the team will now face Algeria in a two-legged tie in March for a place in Qatar 2022.
Song, who previously played for West Ham United in England and spent time in France, Italy, Germany, and Turkey during his playing career, appeared in four World Cups and won the Africa Cup of Nations in 2000 and 2002.
He most recently served as coach of Cameroon’s Under-21 team.
Who is Rigobert Song?
Rigobert Song Bahanag is a former professional footballer from Cameroon who is currently the national team’s manager. Song, who is well-known for his defensive abilities, often played as a centre back but could also play right back.
Rigobert Song established himself as a player for a variety of European, British, and Turkish clubs until retiring in 2010. The former great has already coached the U-21 squad and served as a technical advisor to the Cameroonian senior team, whom he guided to the 2018 African Cup of Nations.
The Cameroonian Football Association stated their intention to compete in the Qatar 2022 World Cup.
Cameroon is scheduled to face Algeria in the African Zone play-offs in less than a month.