A report on Wednesday suggested that experienced coach Guus Hiddink had agreed terms with the Ivorian FA to coach Les Elephants during the World Cup, but Hiddink's agent, Cees van Nieuwenhuyzen, has now denied any such claims.
"The reports claiming that Guus has reached an agreement with the Ivorian Football Association are premature. Both parties are still negotiating," said Van Nieuwenhuyzen to Metro.
"Ivory Coast are determined to appoint Guus as their new head coach, but we have to reach an agreement with the Russian FA first. When we've dealt with the situation with Russia, Guus still has to agree personal terms with the Ivorian FA," Goal.com reports.
But Ivorian Football Federation president Jacques Anouma told reporters: "I know you all expect me to tell you the name of the new coach of the Elephants, but I have not yet signed with a coach.
"I've actually met many, as mentioned in your various newspapers. But none has yet been chosen.''
Hiddink took Russia to the semi-finals of the 2008 European Championship but they failed to qualify for this summer's World Cup.
It is believed his contract with the Russian federation, which runs until the end of June, could be a sticking point in negotiations, ESPN reports.
However, RFU president Sergei Fursenko has insisted that Hiddink must fulfil his contract obligations to the very end despite the fact that he has not been paid since January.
The National Academy Fund (NAF), sponsored by Chelsea's billionaire owner Roman Abramovich, was paying Hiddink's 7-million-euro salary through the end of last year under the agreement with former RFU president Vitaly Mutko.
Fursenko, who succeeded Mutko as RFU chief last month, last week said "no comment" when asked by Reuters if he intended to pay Hiddink's salary this year.
"It's true my client hasn't been paid since January but right now I'm not going to put any legal pressure on the Russian FA to pay up, there's still time to solve that problem," said van Nieuwenhuizen, Reuters informs.
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