Legendary French coach Claude Le Roy decided to call time on his head coaching role with the Togo football team after failing to lead his team to the AFCON finals. Hence, Paulo Duarte has now been named as the new coach of the Togo men’s national football team, but will not be starting his new job until August.

Instead, the Portuguese coach will continue to lead Angolan champions Primeiro de Agosto, who he started with last September and has led to the top of the table with 13 matches still to play.

The former two-time Burkina Faso boss has signed a three-year deal to replace Claude Le Roy, who resigned last month.

Duarte’s deal with his club means he will miss Togo’s opening 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers in June, away to Senegal and then home to Namibia. Local coach Jonas Kokou Komla will be in charge of those games.


It is a slightly puzzling decision taken by Togolese Football Federation (FTF). We know how good a coach Duarte is but Togo have been underperforming and the game against Senegal will be the biggest since Senegal are overwhelming favourites to qualify from the group.

Duarte’s first competitive games in charge will be in September with back-to-back FIFA World Cup qualifying games against Congo-Brazzaville.

The 52-year-old also coached Gabon at the international level and Tunisian giants CS Sfaxien at the club level so he comes in with an abundance of experience in the continent.

Togo will be hoping for a change in fortunes and will want to give something to their coach to work on before September.