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Carlos Queiroz
Carlos Queiroz
Qatar national team sack coach Queiroz

DOHA: Qatar’s football association announced on Wednesday it had terminated the contract of national team coach Carlos Queiroz, replacing him with Spain’s Tintin Marquez, without elaborating on the reasons behind the move. In a succession of statements on X, formerly Twitter, the Qatar Football Association (QFA) announced it had cut ties with Portugal’s Queiroz before swiftly announcing the appointment of his replacement.

“Carlos Queiroz’s tenure of the Qatar national team has ended amicably by mutual agreement between the two parties,” the QFA said, expressing “sincere gratitude” to the outgoing coach for “his unwavering dedication, leadership, and contributions during his tenure”. Queiroz was appointed to his position last February on a four-year contract with the aim of qualifying for the 2026 World Cup. The appointment followed Qatar’s disappointing performance in the 2022 World Cup on home soil in which they suffered three defeats in three matches in the group stage under the stewardship of Spanish coach Felix Sanchez.

A former Real Madrid and Portugal coach, Queiroz had led Qatar to two victories in the first two matches of the 2026 World Cup qualifiers, beating India 3-0 and securing a comfortable 8-1 victory over Afghanistan. In the aftermath of the Afghanistan victory, Queiroz wrote on Instagram that his team’s performance had been “competent, serious and ambitious”. “What’s next? We want to do more and better. We want to train and be better prepared... Now we start our pre-preparation camp for the Asia Cup,” he added.

In all, over 12 matches with Qatar, Queiroz’s record stands at five wins, two draws and five losses. The QFA has said Spain’s Lopez, who coaches Qatar Stars League team Al Wakrah, will lead the Gulf state into the Asian Cup which it will host beginning in January. “The coach will be in charge of the Qatar national team at the 2023 Asian Cup which will be hosted in Qatar,” the QFA said in a statement. “The Qatar Football Association expresses gratitude and appreciation to Al Wakrah Sports Club for their cooperation and consent in facilitating Coach Marquez Lopez’s appointment,” the Qatar football body added. — AFP

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