DOHA, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Qatar, who lead their qualifying group for the 2010 World Cup, have terminated the contract of their Uruguayan coach Jorge Fossati.
Qatar's soccer chiefs decided Fossati's recovery from recent stomach surgery would take too long and that a new coach was needed for the rest of the campaign.
A senior federation official said Frenchman Bruno Metsu, who quit as coach of United Arab Emirates on Sunday, was favourite to succeed him.
'The contract was terminated, he just had an operation on his stomach which will take more than a month to heal,' the official told Reuters by telephone on Wednesday.
'We are interested in Metsu, he knows Qatar, but we are looking at local coaches also.'
Three of the 10 remaining teams in Asian World Cup qualifying have parted company with their coaches since the weekend, with Metsu's departure and the resignation of Uzbekistan coach Rauf Inileev, the 2007 Asian coach of the year.
Qatar currently lead Group One after a win and a draw in their opening round four qualifiers.
The tiny Gulf state, however, could be booted out of the competition and replaced by Iraq if the Court of Arbitration for Sport overrules FIFA's decision not to punish them for fielding an ineligible player in an earlier round.