- Associated Press - Thursday, March 5, 2015

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) - Senegal has hired Aliou Cisse as its coach, a rare instance of a black African taking charge of one of the continent’s top teams.

He succeeds Alain Giresse, a Frenchman who left after Senegal’s first-round elimination at the African Cup in January.

Cisse captained Senegal to the World Cup quarterfinals in 2002. He previously was an assistant coach with the national squad and most recently coached Senegal’s Olympic team.

The Senegal Football Federation said he signed a four-year contract. He will be evaluated after the 2017 African Cup of Nations.

Only three of the 16 teams at this year’s continental championship had homegrown coaches - South Africa, Zambia and Congo - with most favoring European imports.

In 2013, Stephen Keshi of Nigeria became the first black African coach to win the Cup of Nations in more than 20 years.

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