The Argentinian Nestor Lorenzowho currently directs the Peruvian Melgar, was announced this Thursday as the new coach of Colombia in place of Reinaldo Rueda, who was dismissed last March after failing to qualify for the 2022 Qatar World Cup.
The Colombian Football Federation (FCF) detailed in a statement that “the new technical director of the Colombian Men’s National Team will be Professor Néstor Gabriel Lorenzo, who will lead our team for the next four years ahead of the World Cup of the FIFA Canada, United States, Mexico 2026”.
Lorenzo is remembered in Colombia for his work as a technical assistant to José Pékerman in the coffee team between 2012 and 2018, a stage in which the Andean team qualified for the World Cups in Brazil 2014 and Russia 2018.
The 56-year-old strategist, added the Colombian Football Federation, will have ex-soccer player Luis Amaranto Perea as his assistant, who has already had experience as a coach in the Junior of Barranquilla and in the Leones of his country.
Lorenzo was Pekerman’s technical assistant during his time with the Argentine national team and was in the 2006 World Cup in Germany. He also held that position in the Mexican teams Toluca and Tigres and is currently the coach of Melgar, which in addition to having qualified for the round of 16 of the Copa Sudamericana at the expense of Argentine Racing, leads the Peruvian league with 34 points, four more than Sport Huancayo, which is second.
“From the Colombian Football Federation we welcome Professor Néstor Lorenzo, hoping that he will reap many successes with our Colombian National Team,” added the FCF.
The criticized ‘was Rueda’
In the Rueda era, the Colombian team went seven rounds of the qualifying rounds without scoring a goal, with five tied games and two defeats, a streak that undoubtedly reduced their aspirations in the South American qualifying rounds for a place in Qatar.
Rueda has been blamed for the fact that players like Luis Díaz, a Liverpool star, will not be in this year’s World Cup; James Rodríguez, top scorer in Brazil 2014, or Radamel Falcao García, who played his only World Cup in Russia and is the highest scorer in the history of the national team. But among his achievements was putting Colombia in third place in last year’s Copa América, played in Brazil, after Argentina and the hosts.