Soccer-Bahrain appoint Croatian Talajic as coach

Dragan Talajic coach of Al Kuwait gestures during their Premier League soccer match against Kazma in Kuwait City January 27, 2012. REUTERS/Tariq AlAli/ File photo

Bahrain have named Croatian Dragan Talajic as manager, the Bahrain Football Association said on Tuesday.

The 58-year-old former goalkeeper, who has managed several clubs in the Middle East, will arrive in Manama this week, the federation added, without giving any details of his contract.

Bahrain exited the Asian Cup in the last 16 with a 3-1 loss to Japan on Jan. 31 and last week terminated the contract of Argentine head coach Juan Antonio Pizzi by mutual consent.

They are second in Group H of the Asian qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup on three points after two matches. They are three points behind leaders UAE who beat them 2-0 in November.

Bahrain visit Nepal in their next qualifying match on March 21 before the reverse fixture five days later.

The top two teams qualify for the third round.

(Reporting by Ahmed El Khashab; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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