Saturday, 8 November 2008

Argentina: Americo Gallego Heads Race To Replace Simeone At River Plate

Americo Gallego has emerged as the man most likely to replace Diego Simeone as coach of River Plate according to reports in the Argentine media.

Simeone resigned on Friday following his side's elimination from the Copa Sudamericana at the hands of Chivas. River are likely to have a temporary coach in place until the end of the Apertura, but will want to get a permanent replacement on board in time for the 2009 Clausura.

Gallego is thought to be the favoured choice at boardroom level, with the club wishing to appoint "a man of club," after Simeone failed to connect with supporters during his near one year tenure at El Monumental.

The 53 year old enjoyed seven successful years as a River Plate player in the eighties, and has coached the side on two previous occasions, winning Argentine titles in 1994 and 2000. Gallego is currently out of work after being sacked by Mexican side UANL Tigres in February and would be likely to jump at the chance to take the reigns at Los Millonairos.

Club America coach Ramon Diaz is the clear supporters choice for the role according to a poll conducted by, coming out with 41% of the vote, but lacks support at boardroom level after he rejected River's advances this time last year to remain at San Lorenzo.

River Plate playing legend Enzo Francescoli has also been mentioned as a possible candidate, although he is unlikely to leave his business interests in order to take up the role, whilst Daniel Passarella - the man replaced by Simeone a year ago - has been linked with an unlikely return in some quarters.

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