Spain sack coach Julen Lopetegui two days before their World Cup opener

Spain sack coach Julen Lopetegui two days before their World Cup opener

After their failures at the World Cup in 2014 (a humiliating group stage exit as holders) and a disappointing knockout defeat to Italy at Euro 2016, Lopetegui came in and guided them flawlessly through World Cup 2018 qualifying, with nine wins and one draw from their 10 games.

"We have been obliged to fire the national coach".

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". If anybody wants to talk to one of our employees, they have to speak to us, too.

"There are those who accuse Rubiales of placing his ego ahead of the interests of the national team".

The club released a statement this afternoon to that effect which said: "Julen Lopetegui will be the coach of Real Madrid after the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation".

"He followed it up by saying: "[It's] a hard situation in these moments for our squad but now more than ever is when we have to support them without stopping.

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.

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At a severely delayed press conference at Spain's World Cup base in Krasnodar, Spanish football federation (RFEF) chief Luis Rubiales expressed dismay at the timing of events that threaten to derail Spain's World Cup chances.

The 51-year-old will depart without having ever lost a match as Spain's senior coach.

"Next, he will direct his first training and on Friday he will debut in Sochi at the match of Spain against Portugal".

"We have to work on a series of decisions that come two days before the beginning of Russian Federation 2018". Rubiales then announced his decision to part ways with Lopetgui, saying the federation was "compelled to act" because of the betrayal.

"I wasn't losing any sleep regarding a new contract as we all know that football is uncertain". I trust a lot in the talent and mentality of this team and I am sure that they can go far and fight for the title.

"I think they need to forget about what's happened and focus on playing as well as they can for Spain".

Real Madrid announced on Tuesday that Lopetegui would succeed Zinedine Zidane at the Bernabeu on a three-year-deal.

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