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Perrin to watch China's final Asian Cup qualifier: report

Updated: 2014-02-27 17:10

Perrin to watch China's final Asian Cup qualifier: report

Alain Perrin in file photo. [Photo/]

BEIJING - China's new head coach elect Alain Perrin will reportedly fly to Dubai with the team and watch its game against Iraq on March 5, the final group match in qualifying for the 2015 Asian Cup in Australia.

A draw will be enough to see China through as group runners-up, behind Saudi Arabia. Fu Bo will coach the side, probably his final game in charge.

Former Lyon coach Perrin was reported to be the new head coach on Wednesday, but the Chinese Football Association (CFA) have not formally confirmed the news.

Web company Sina reported that according to CFA vice-president Yu Hongchen, the 57-year-old Frenchman will take over from caretaker Fu, in charge of the team following the sacking of Antonio Camacho in the wake of a humiliating 5-1 friendly defeat to Thailand.

The CFA said on Weibo, China's answer to Twitter: "We have been progressing on choosing a new coach for the national team, and will make it open to the media when there's a decision."

Perrin began his coaching career in France at AS Nancy in 1983 as junior coach to Arsene Wenger, now manager of English Premier League Arsenal. He later took non-league club Troyes AC to Ligue 1 after three promotions in six seasons and qualifying for the UEFA Cup.

He moved to Marseille in 2002 and went to the United Arab Emirates in July 2004 to become the boss of Al-Ain, only to be sacked in October.

Perrin became English Premier League outfit Portsmouth's boss in April 2005 but only lasted until November before returning to his home country, where his coaching career reached new heights.

In 2007 he took Sochaux to French Cup glory before replacing former Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier as manager of Lyon in 2007.

Perrin steered the club to a seventh consecutive Ligue 1 title and the French Cup in his first year. He was linked to French national team's coaching position the following year but Raymond Domenech continued his reign.

Perrin went to Saint Etienne in 2008 and after a year joined Qatari club Al Gharafa. After only two months he was appointed boss of Qatar's Umm Salal in March 2013, a move that lasted a little over six months

The Chinese national team has struggled in recent years, failing to reach the final round of World Cup Asian qualifiers for the past three editions, and even finding it difficult to make the Asian Cup finals.