The Iraqi Soccer Federation decided to name Adnan Hamad as the Iraqi National Team’s coach instead of Norwegian Egil Olsen.
This decision came after a meeting the federation held in Baghdad. Local and Arab press have previously reported that Olsen’s dismissal was a done deal, but the federation’s head, Hussein Saeed, said the final decision will take place in a meeting to be held in Baghdad. Indeed, the meeting took place and Olsen was dismissed.
The reason that there was a delay in the federation’s final decision was that they were deliberating on how to resolve the financial penalty in Olsen’s contract. This was a problem for the Iraqi federation. After reviewing the contract’s terms, it turned out that Olsen was to head to northern Iraq to attend the Iraqi Premier League matches and pick new candidates for the National Team. However, Olsen did not do so and was considered in breach of his contract with the federation. This led the federation to dismiss him and to replace him with Adnan Hamad, who currently leads the Jordanian Al-Faisali team. Adnan’s contract is due to end with Al-Faisali on the first of May.
The Iraqi Federation thanked Al-Faisali’s management for loaning its coach Adnan Hamad, who is now available to lead our team 12 days prior to the game against Qatar. This detrimental match is scheduled to take place in Doha on the 26th of March.
Adnan Hamad, a renowned athlete, has led the Iraqi national teams over the years. He started his career as a player of the Samarra club and represented several clubs such as Al-Zawra, Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya (Air Force), and Al-Talaba (Students). He also represented the Iraqi National Team in several championships.
Later, he returned to Samarra as a player and coach at the same time. He coached Al-Zawra Club and succeeded in leading many household named athletes. The club won fourth place in the Asian Champions League, and second place in Asia’s Premier League Competition.
In his journey with the national teams, he worked as an assistant coach to Yahya Alwan during the 1996 Asian Nations finals. The Iraqi team made it to the quarterfinals in these matches that took place in the United Arab Emirates.
He later led the junior team to win fifth place in the 1999 Asian Nations finals in Qatar. In 2000, he led the youth team in winning the Asian Cup that qualified them to participate in the 2001 World Cup in Argentina.
In addition, he led the Iraqi team in winning the 2000 West Asia Cup in Syria, and coached the Olympic team that came in fourth place in Athens in 2004. During that year, he also won the “Best Coach in Asia” title and ranked ninth on the “World’s Best Coaches” list.
Adnan Hamad also worked in Lebanon, where he coached Al-Ansar team during the 2005 League. As coach for the Jordanian Al-Faisali team, he led them to winning the 2006 Asian Federation Cup, and getting second place in both the Arab Premier League and Asian Federation Cup in 2007.