Thu, 28 Oct, 2021
Beirut: Former Pakhtakor head coach Miodrag Radulovic has replaced Italian Giuseppe Giannini at the helm of the Lebanon national team, with 2018 FIFA World Cup and 2019 AFC Asian Cup joint-qualification campaigns top of the 47-year-old Montenegrin’s agenda.
Lebanon have been drawn in Group G of the qualifiers alongside 2015 AFC Asian Cup runners-up Korea Republic, ASEAN duo Myanmar and Laos, and Kuwait.
The Lebanese open the qualifiers at home to Kuwait and the Cedars’ will be hoping that Radulovic’s experience of Kuwaiti football can be of benefit when they face the ten-time Gulf Cup of Nations winners in Saida on June 11.
Radulovic, who led Uzbekistan giants to the Round of 16 of the 2010 AFC Champions League, had spells with two clubs in Kuwait, firstly with Kazma in 2012 and then, his most recent position, with Al Jahra SC in 2014 following a season with FC Atyrau in Kazakhstan.
The group winners and four best runners-up (total 12 teams) will advance to the 2019 Asian Cup finals and the final round of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup.
The next best 24 teams from the preliminary stage of the joint qualifiers will compete in a separate competition for the remaining slots (12 slots or 11 slots + 1 slot for the host) in the 24-team 2019 Asian Cup finals.