Sven-Goran Eriksson named new Ivory Coast coach

ABIDJAN: Former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson was on Sunday named as coach of the Ivory Coast for the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa.

"Sven-Goran Eriksson is the new coach of Ivory Coast. He will lead the team at the World Cup where his objective is to ensure an honourable participation," said a statement released by the country''s football federation (FIF).

The 62-year-old Swede, who guided England to the quarter-finals of the 2002 and 2006 World Cups, takes over from Vahid Halilhodzic who was sacked after Ivory Coast were knocked out by Algeria in the quarter-finals of the African Cup of Nations in January.

Ivory Coast, who boast Chelsea striker Didier Drogba amongst their stars, are in Group G at the June 11-July 11 World Cup finals along with Brazil, Portugal and North Korea.

Four years ago in Germany, they bowed out at the group stage when they finished third behind Netherlands and Argentina, but ahead of Serbia and Montenegro.

After negotiations took place last week, Eriksson told the Svenska Dagbladet newspaper: "It would be great to be on a bench at another World Cup.