The Iraq Football Association have sacked coach Adnan Hamad following the team’s failure to progress to the final round of qualifying for the 2010 World Cup.
Iraq became continental champions 12 months ago by winning the Asian Cup but a 1-0 defeat to Qatar last Sunday ended their hopes of qualification for South Africa.
The IFA subsequently decided to relieve Hamad, who succeeded Egil Olsen in February, of his duties and turn their attentions to rebuilding.
“The Iraqi FA has decided to disband the team as of now and also not continue with the services of Adnan Hamad as coach,” an IFA statement read.
“It is really sad that Iraq lost in the 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifiers. Iraqis are not happy with the results.
“We will concentrate on rebuilding the team for the Gulf Cup in 2009 as well as the FIFA Confederations Cup. The team will not participate in the West Asian Football Federation Championship.”
Hamad insisted his departure was unrelated to the World Cup failure, attributing the decision to the uncertainty over the future of the IFA following the interference of the government.
“I had an agreement with the Iraqi FA that I would resign directly after the return from Tianjin City where we played against China,” said Hamad.
“The decision is not related to the defeat that we had against Qatar.”
The IFA was dissolved by the Iraqi government in May, along with the country’s Olympic Committee and all other sporting bodies.
That decision put the World Cup qualifying campaign in doubt when the FIFA executive committee suspended the IFA – a decision rescinded after the Iraqi government said the IFA were excluded from the ban.
However, that has failed to ease Hamad’s concerns.
“The main reason behind my decision was that there is uncertainty about the future of the Iraq FA and the national team and I’ve discussed the issue with the Iraqi officials,” he added.
“There was supposed to be an official contract with the Iraqi FA but the recent problems that happened in Iraq regarding the intervention of the government in sports prevented it.”