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Argentine Pekerman leaves Venezuela coach role

Argentine Jose Pekerman has left his role as Venezuela coach after just 15 months, the national football federation said on Wednesday.

Former Argentina and Colombia coach Pekerman had been in the job since November 2021 and was given the task of trying to lead the Vinotinto (red wine) to a first ever World Cup qualification.

The Venezuelan Football Federation (FVF) said team manager Pascual Lezcano, who is also Pekerman’s agent, had also left his role.

The move came following hours of intense media speculation.

“For the FVF it is fundamental that everyone who makes up our work team shares the highest standards of commitment and service,” said the FVF in a statement, without giving further details.

Argentine press claimed Pekerman had quit due to unpaid wages and dissatisfaction with his working conditions.

In Venezuela, media reports said the rupture was due to “irregularities” in Lezcano’s management that had been discovered during an audit.

Venezuela remain the only member of the South American football federation, CONMEBOL, never to have qualified for the World Cup.

The Vinotinto finished bottom of the single CONMEBOL qualification group for the last World Cup in Qatar.

Venezuela won one match and lost three under Pekerman, 73.

They due to play friendlies against Saudi Arabia and Uzbekistan later this month.

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