Ivory Coast boss rues missing Lyon job
New Ivory Coast boss Herve Renard has admitted he was disappointed not to have been chosen as Lyon coach.
The mastermind of Zambia's surprise Africa Nations Cup win in 2012, Renard was named successor to Sabri Lamouchi at the head of the Elephants on Thursday and immediately began preparing for their upcoming 2015 ANC qualifiers.
The 45-year-old could, however, have been working towards Lyon's Ligue 1 season had he been appointed at the helm of the seven-time French champions following Remi Garde's departure in June.
Renard reportedly met OL president Jean-Michel Aulas even before he had ended the 2013-14 season as coach of Sochaux, but after being the media's favourite to replace Garde, he was pipped to the post by Hubert Fournier.
"I regret not having been chosen by Lyon, but that's part and parcel of sport," Renard told RMC. "I wish good luck to Hubert Fournier and Lyon.
"I could have stayed in Ligue 1. A club made me an offer, but I refused it. I knew what I wanted. I did not want to stay in Ligue 1 at any cost. I wanted a challenge that met my ambitions."
Renard took over at Sochaux in October with the club struggling desperately in the Ligue 1 relegation zone, and he only narrowly failed to prevent the club dropping out of the top flight on the final day of the season.
Ivory Coast failed to reach the knockout phase of the 2014 World Cup, finishing third in Group C in Brazil behind Colombia and Greece.