Mali name assistant coach Pathe Diallo as caretaker

Mali's Football Federation has appointed the Eagles' assistant coach to manage the team after Alain Giresse declined to renew his contract due to differences with FA officials

The Mali Football Federation (Femafoot) named assistant coach Pathe Diallo as caretaker of the national team on Tuesday following the departure of former coach Alain Giresse, who led the Eagles to the bronze at the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.

Diallo was also the U20 team coach, and is being tasked with preparing the senior team for the 2014 World Cup qualifying set for early next month.

Mali are drawn in Group H against Algeria, Benin and Rwanda, and will begin their campaign against the Squirrels in Cotonou on June 3 before hosting the Fennecs a week later at a yet to be announced venue.

Fifa says it will decide this week whether the meeting will be held in troubled Bamako or not. The Algerian Football Federation earlier requested for the venue to be moved to a neutral ground, possibly neighbouring Burkina Faso, but Malian officials insist normality has returned to the capital to host the clash.

Delegations from Nigerian club Sunshine Stars and Egypt’s Al Ahly were left stranded in the city two weeks ago after their Caf Champions League games following renewed political violence in the West African nation.