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Abraham Mebratu has been appointed as the new coach for Ethiopia national team on a two-year deal.

The 48-year-old replaces Ashenafi Bekele, who resigned from his post in December last year.

In the weeks and months running up to the announcement, several names were bandied about as Ethiopia Football Federation (EFF) looked to rope in a new mentor.

Caoaches such as Wubetu Abate (Hawassa City), Gebremedhin Haile (Jimma Ababa Jifar), Seyoum Kebede (Mekelacheya) and Tsegaye Kidanemariam (Wolwalo Adigrat University),were all linked with the job.

However, the federation sent an official communication to media houses on Thursday, to make the surprise announcement of Mebratu’ appointment.

Mebratu formerly coached Yemeni national team where he helped the team qualify for Asian Cup which will take place in United Arab Emirates in 2019.

His first major task will be to lead the Walia Ibex to the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon next year.

Ethiopia lost their opening Group F qualifier 5-0 in Ghana and their next game is hosting Sierra Leone in September.

That game is followed by back-to-back ties with neighbours Kenya.

According to a document from Ethiopia Football Federation, Mebratu will earn a monthly salary of 126,000 Ethiopian Birr in addition to other benefits.

A lover of African football who boasts experience in journalism, having previously worked at Brand Agenda Publications, East Africa University News and University Post in Uganda before moving to Soka25east.com. On Twitter @fgchuma

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