Tehran (AFP) – The Iranian Football Federation (FFIRI) said on Sunday that Dragan Skocic has been reinstated as coach less than a week after sacking the Croat.

On Monday, the official IRNA news agency said 53-year-old Skocic had lost his job just five months before the start of the World Cup in Qatar.

According to daily sports newspaper Khabar Varzeshi, the likes of ex-Iran captain and star striker Ali Daei refused a proposal to take over from Skocic.

“The Board of the Football Federation has once again emphasised on the all-round support of the technical staff of the national team, and based on this, the cooperation between the two sides will continue,” FFIRI said.

Skocic was appointed in early February 2020 to replace Belgian Marc Wilmots, who left in December 2019, three matches into the second round of Asian World Cup qualifying, in a dispute with the federation after two consecutive defeats.

Skocic guided Iran to first place in their group in both that stage and the final one, to take Iran to their sixth World Cup. He won 15 of his 18 games in charge.

In Qatar, Iran kick off their World Cup campaign against England on November 21 with the United States and Wales also in their group.