Sports

Spain name new caretaker manager for the World Cup

Spain name new caretaker manager for the World Cup

Spain coach Julen Lopetegui will take over as Real Madrid manager on a three-year contract after the World Cup, the European champions said today. I won't judge a club on how they act but, until a few minutes before, we were kept in the dark.

"We have made a decision to fire the national coach", Spanish Football Federation president, Luis Rubiales, said.

"We are left in a complicated situation", Rubiales said. Maybe this is tough now, but in the end it will make us stronger.

He was dismissed on Wednesday, with Spain sporting director Fernando Hierro - who previously played for Real Madrid and Bolton - taking charge for the tournament.

New Spain national team coach Fernando Hierro says he aims to change as little as possible as he prepares his team for Friday's World Cup opener against Portugal in Sochi.

"There's a lot to do".

"We are in a very complicated situation, but the players and the new coaching staff will do everything in their power to take the team as far as possible".

Lopetegui is now in Russian Federation with the Spanish squad, but will take over at the Bernabeu following the resignation of Zinedine Zidane.

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However, former Spain great Xavi Hernandez said the federation did the right thing.

Real, who are now without a manager following Zinedine Zidane's shock departure earlier this month, are ready for a summer shake-up.

With one of the best teams in the world at their disposal, the mess in the Spanish camp will be a welcome development for their Group B foes - Portugal, Iran and Morocco.

"I do not feel betrayed because Julen has done a relentless job, but we are forced to move on this because of how things have been done".

Lopetegui, unbeaten in 20 games as coach, winning 14 and drawing six, was sacked after being named as Real Madrid coach on Tuesday.

"We can not alter two years of hard work in the coming days".

Later Wednesday, Spain named Hierro as the coach for the tournament in Russian Federation. I admire Julen very much, I respect him very much.

Spanish media outlets reported on Wednesday morning that Spain skipper Sergio Ramos led a contingent of senior players to meet Rubiales when the latter arrived in Krasnodar after giving the FIFA Congress a miss.


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