Why FRMF needs to explain itself after Renard’s departure

Faouzi Lakjaa © AFP
Faouzi Lakjaa © AFP

Hervé Renard is gone, now what do we do? Before turning the page and thinking about a new technical staff, the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) has a duty to publicly clarify certain issues and put an end to rumours.

From the Hamdallah affair, to the incomprehensible choices of the technical staff during the 2019 CAF Africa Cup of Nations, to the surprising dismissal of FRMF media manager Dounia Lahrech, and finally the recent releases of the now former Atlas Lions coach Hervé Renard, the FRMF is silent, further amplifying the question marks around the atmosphere within the national team and Fouzi Lekjaâ department.

A few days ago, Mustapha Hadji, Hervé Renard‘s 2nd assistant, clearly stated his disagreement with some of the former coach’s choices during the 2019 CAF Africa Cup of Nations, an abnormal statement in a context of elimination that resembles a kind of disassociation from the French coach.

Last night, we learned from Hervé Renard that he had made his decision well before the 2019 AFCON, justifying his choice by problems with President Lekjaâ’s entourage, “Two people in particular (…) I no longer want to work with these people,” the coach told the blogger and referee Redouane Chiker. On the same interview, Hervé Renard stated halfway that his resignation did not concern his long-time assistant, Patrice Beaumelle, “I can’t put his answer in clear, but basically no,” says Renard, while stating that his relationship is not in good terms with his two assistants. The former Lions coach is even throwing the ball into Beaumelle’s camp, concerning the physical preparation before the AFCON and its impact on the players’ condition, “We all know who is in charge of these training sessions so…”, he says.

These words should not go unnoticed, especially since the national team is in a transition phase after the retirement of some executives. The purpose of a detailed update by FRMF on Renard’s statements and the controversies that had previously arisen, was not to sue the federal officials, but to continue the work of cleaning up the climate of the national teams that had been underway for almost four years, and to resume the new cycle after Hervé Renard’s departure, on a sound basis, regardless of the identity of the new national coach.