The journeyman Serbian coach Bora Milutinovic will take charge of Asian champions Iraq for June's Confederations Cup. The 64-year-old replaces temporary coach Radesh Shneichel who took over after Jorvan Vieira, who led Iraq to a sensational Asian Cup triumph in 2007, was sacked in February after Iraq failed to win a game at the Gulf Cup in the Brazilian's second spell in charge. Iraq have failed to qualify for the final round of Asian World Cup qualifiers for South Africa 2010, but under experienced veteran Milutinovic, they will travel to South Africa later this year as Asian champions.
"The Iraq FA officially agreed on Tuesday with coach Bora Milutinovic to take the helm of the national team in the forthcoming FIFA Confederations Cup which will be held in South Africa in June," said Iraq Football Association vice president Najeh Hamoud. "We have signed a pre-contract with coach Milutinovic in Doha and he will come to Baghdad to sign the official contract before starting his job with the national team.
"We had a lot of negotiations with different coaches but we preferred coach Milutinovic because he has a great CV and he has previously coached several teams in the World Cup finals. "The duration of the contract will be until the end of the FIFA Confederations Cup. We will then evaluate the work of the coach and decide whether to extend the duration of the contract or not." Iraq will face European champions Spain, New Zealand and hosts South Africa in Group A at the Confederations Cup, while Brazil, United States, Italy and Egypt line up in Group B.
Milutinovic guided five different teams to five consecutive World Cup finals after taking hosts Mexico to the quarter- finals in 1986. * With agencies