Algeria is on its fourth manager in a little over a year, as Lucas Alcaraz has been hired by the north African country. Alcaraz was fired by Granada on Monday after leading the team to the bottom of the standings in Spain’s La Liga. Alcaraz, who is now 50 years old, has been replaced, at least in the interim, by Tony Adams, once a legendary player for Arsenal. This seems like it is out of Alcaraz’s comfort zone, as he has never coached outside of Spain in his 20-year coaching career. However, he may have gotten tired of trying to pull a team out of mediocrity. Alcaraz was most recently in the news for complaining about Barcelona’s Ivan Rakitic insulting a Granada player because the team was on the brink of relegation.
Alcaraz was hired by Algeria after Belgian Georges Leekens quit. Leekens left Algeria after getting the team eliminated in the group stage of 2017’s Africa Cup of Nations. Other coaches that Algeria has gone through in the past year include Christian Gorcuff, who resigned last April, and Milovan Rajevac, who only lasted two games before quitting. Rajevac was subject to many rumors concerning his players’ discontent with his approach. All this means that Alcaraz will have his work cut out for him trying to make a mark with the African football giants.
Prior to Alcaraz’s hiring, Joaquin Caparros, a compatriot of Alcaraz, and Aitor Karanka, former manager of Middlesbrough, were rumored to be close to taking the job. Algeria is in danger of breaking their World Cup qualifying streak, as they have made two World Cups in a row. Currently, they’re at the bottom of their qualifying group after two matches. Alcaraz will get his first chance to manage the Algerian national team in an away game versus Togo in qualifiers for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.