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Spain sack their manager 48 hours before World Cup opener

Fernando Hierro will take charge for the duration of the World Cup.

What's the Spanish for out the gap?
What's the Spanish for out the gap?
Image: AP/PA Images

Updated Jun 13th 2018, 12:50 PM

YOU CAN’T SPELL Saipan without Spain.

On the eve of the 2018 World Cup, Spain have decided to part ways with their manager Julen Lopetegui.

Reports from Russia suggested the Spanish FA [RFEF] — particularly the federation’s new president Luis Rubiales – were blindsided  by Real Madrid announcing yesterday that Lopetegui was to be their new manager.

The 2010 winners held a scheduled press conference today where Rubiales clarified the 53-year-old’s fate.

“We have been forced to dispense with the national coach. We wish him the best of luck,” said Rubiales.

The negotiations occurred without informing the Spanish FA and we were informed just five minutes before the press release.

“There’s a way that you must act. Julen has worked in a great way with the team, but we cannot accept how he has acted in this case.”

When he was asked who would be taking over from Lopetegui, Rubiales gave little away:

“We are going to touch as little as possible. We are working on it. When we know we will tell you.

I have spoken with the players and I can guarantee they will do everything, along with the new coach, to take the team as far as possible.

“To win is very important, to have the best coach very important, but above everything is acting in the right way. Maybe this is tough now, but in the end it will make us stronger.”

Fernando Hierro – director of football with the RFEF — will take charge for the duration of the World Cup.

Spain open their Russia 2018 campaign with an Iberian derby against Portugal on Friday.

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About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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