Mainland media are speculating that Cannavaro’s appointment for the China Cup may well be an audition for something more permanent. File photo: AFP Former Italian captain Fabio Cannavaro has been named China’s national football coach, spearheading the country’s ambitions in the sport. The 45-year-old World Cup winner will combine the job with his current position as head Chinese Super League giants Guangzhou Evergrande. He takes the post vacated in January by his mentor and compatriot Marcello Lippi, under whom Cannavaro lifted the World Cup in 2006. The 70-year-old Lippi will stay on as a consultant under the new coaching set-up named for the China Cup. It was not immediately clear if Cannavaro will lead the team on a temporary or permanent basis. His first match in charge of the national side will be on Thursday, when the hosts play Thailand in the China Cup, which also involves Uruguay and Uzbekistan. (AFP)

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