No hero’s return for Herve Renard: How Ivory Coast FAILED with AFCON 2024 request

Desperate for a response after squeezing into the knockout stages of the Africa Cup of Nations, host nation Ivory Coast has failed to ‘borrow' Hervé Renard from the France Football Federation on a short-term stint for the remainder of the competition.

The Football Federation terminated the contract of another Frenchman, Jean-Louis Gasset, on Wednesday following a run of poor results.

The home side lost back-to-back games in front of their own fans – a 1-0 loss to Nigeria and a humiliating 4-0 defeat to lowly-ranked Equatorial Guinea at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium.

The losses saw them fail to secure a spot in the knockout stages automatically and had to play the waiting game to stand any chance of advancing to the next round.

Eventually, they have Morocco to thank for keeping their competition hopes alive when the North African side defeated Zambia in the final group game of Group F that ensured a place for the hosts in the last 16.

Possible talks from the football federation were said to have been initiated with their French counterparts over the former Ivory Coast Coach, who led the country to the AFCON title in 2015 and is currently in Abidjan.

As it stands, it appears coach Emerse Faé will likely stay in charge for the Round of 16 game against defending champions Senegal in Yamoussoukro.

How the Herve Renard-Ivory Coast approach started

It all began with a Facebook post by a certain KingEdiems Prive on Facebook, who suggested that the Frenchman should not leave Abidjan after AFCON 2024. The post reads as follows:

“Just to inform you that Hervé Renard is in Abidjan. My old Idriss Diallo, sorry. You know what to do. Vetcho can be an independent consultant huh .”

Herve Renard loan post where it started from

The post sparked a lot of reactions from Ivorians, who made the suggestion for the French Football Federation to reach out to their ‘hero' to stop the poor run in the national team and hope that he can be on the ground to win AFCON 2024 for the country.

But talks with the French federation over a possible loan deal for Renard broke down without an agreement Thursday.

According to L'Equipe, the Ivorian federation had contacted Renard and his response was that he would have to wait for an agreement between both federations for the ‘loan' which came as a shock.

No Hervé Renard deal!

Renard confirmed later in the day that there was no deal between the two Federations, but he would have loved the opportunity to be on the sidelines for the hosts and admitted that he was disappointed that no agreement was reached.

“The negotiations did not end favourably; it was because it was not supposed to happen. I would have loved it, but destiny chose otherwise,” Renard said to Canal + on Thursday night.

Herve Renard AFCON 2024
Photo by Icon Sport

Renard has a running contract with the French Women's team until the Olympic Games later this year, and wll be looking to prepare his side for the semi-finals of the UEFA Nations League against Germany on February 23.

Renard is very popular in Ivory Coast for his exploits with the national team in 2015. That was his second AFCON title after leading Zambia to the title in 2012.

He also got the world's attention in 2022 when his Saudi Arabia side earned a shock World Cup win over eventual winners Argentina in the group stage.

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Rotimi Akindele

Rotimi Akindele is a Sports Journalist with almost two decades' experience. He is a TV and radio host, commentator and writer who has covered major sporting events across the globe. Akindele's sports content has been listened to and read by a global audience. He is a well-known figure within Nigeria and the African football scene.