Published: Thu, June 14, 2018
Sports | By Ivan Ross

Spain fires football coach on eve of World Cup

Spain fires football coach on eve of World Cup

His first task will be to ready the team for their opening game in Sochi on Friday, which will see them take on European champions and Iberian neighbours, Portugal.

Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales sacked Lopetegui on the eve of the tournament, citing his conduct in agreeing to become the next Real coach without informing his current employers.

Rubiales added: "We wish him the best of luck."Suggestions first emerged early on Wednesday that Rubiales was not happy with the situation and would remove Lopetegui just two days before Spain's Group B opener".

"The negotiation has happened without any information to the RFEF, just five minutes before the press release".

"The RFEF, the national team, is the team of every Spaniard and there are decisions that have to be taken".

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The national team is the most important we have, the World Cup is the biggest of all.

Rubiales said the players, who Spanish media said had tried to dissuade him from such drastic action, had vowed to give everything for the team.

Immediately, the conversation turned to who might replace Lopetegui for the World Cup.

Spain's World Cup hopes may have been dashed today as their head-coach Julen Lopetegui, has been sacked with immediate effect.

"So if the manager has gone, I'm sure when it comes to going on that field, they will still be playing exactly the same they always have done, they've managed to be successful doing that". "There is a way that you must act, Julen has worked in a great way with the team, but we can not accept how he has acted in this case".

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After Spain fired coach Julen Lopetegui just one day before the start of the tournament, Pique is looking to the past for how the team can rally.

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

"Rubiales feels betrayed and his anger has only increased as the hours have passed".

Last month, Lopetegui had extended his contract with the national team until 2020. But really this is a total mess and has cast a huge shadow over a tournament Spain were expected to win, or at least reach the critical stages.

"I'd have accepted communication and normal procedure, if he'd said "Hey Luis, let's talk about how we do this".

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