Anelka coaching role puts Tigana fate in doubt

13 April 2012 08:47

French football coach Jean Tigana said Friday he was unsure of his fate at Shanghai's Shenhua club after striker Nicolas Anelka was named player-coach.

There has been mounting speculation that Tigana faces the axe as head coach of the Chinese team, but on Thursday Shenhua insisted he remained on board, while announcing that Anelka would become a "player-coach".

Shenhua also said it had sacked three assistant coaches picked by Tigana, who is a former Fulham and Monaco boss.

"I have absolutely nothing to tell you. because I do not know myself," Tigana told AFP by phone on Friday.

"I am currently waiting for letters from the club. I am not aware of anything," he said.

Shenhua has won only one of their five matches so far this season and the club is now languishing in 11th place in the 16-team Chinese Super League.

A Shenhua official repeated Friday that the French striker, a former Arsenal and Chelsea star, had been given coaching duties but declined to comment on Tigana.

"Anelka's title is player-coach," said the official, who did not want to be named.

In a posting on Twitter late Thursday, Anelka said: "It's official. I just become the new player-manager of Shanghai Shenhua."

Anelka, the most high-profile foreign footballer to sign for the Chinese league, joined Shenhua amid hopes he could boost the performance of the club.

Shenhua will play the Tianjin Teda club later on Friday.

Source: AFP