Former Milan player Marco Simone will coach in Morocco's second tier

Marco Simone (left) with Chabab Mohammedia president Hicham Aït Menna
Former Milan player Marco Simone (left) has been given the task of earning promotion to the top-flight in Morocco with Chabab Mohammedia by club president Hicham Aït Menna

Moroccan second division club Chabab Mohammedia have appointed Italian Marco Simone as head coach.

The former AC Milan, Monaco and PSG forward's main mission is to lead the side back to the top flight in Morocco.

Mohammedia, one of the oldest sides in Morocco, were crowned champions of the third division last season to earn promotion to league two.

"We think that his experience as a player and coach will help our club," club president Hicham Aït Menna said.

He will be assisted by former club coach Rachid Rouki.

It will not be Simone's first experience of working on the continent, having had a short stint in 2017 at Tunisia's Club Africain.

Simone began his coaching career in 2011 and has had spells with French sides Monaco, Tours and Stade Laval as well as in Switzerland with FC Lausanne-Sport.

However his arrival in Morocco has divided opinion with some thinking it could make Mohammedia a serious candidate for a return to the top while others see it as more of a publicity stunt.

Last year, there were reports that Brazil's former World Footballer of the Year Rivaldo had joined the club's coaching staff - a move which he later denied.

The 1980 Moroccan champions, who are based just outside Casablanca, were founded in 1948, so making them one of the country's oldest clubs.

They last played in the top flight in 2009 and are owned by Menna, whose real estate business has made him one of the region's wealthiest men and who is determined to return the club to its former glories.

The team's most famous player is Ahmed Faras, the Moroccan national team's all-time leading scorer with 42 goals and a player who won the African Footballer of the Year in 1975.

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