Julen Lopetegui ‘very sad’ following shock departure from World Cup

Sacked Spain coach Julen Lopetegui admits he is “very sad” about his shock departure from the World Cup.

The 51-year-old was relieved of his duties on the eve of the tournament after Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales learned – just five minutes before the official announcement was made – of his deal to become Real Madrid manager after the tournament.

“I am very sad, but hoping that we have a magnificent World Cup and that we win,” Lopetegui told reporters from Cadena SER and COPE as left Krasnodar airport for a flight to Madrid.

Former Spain coach Javier Clemente has accused Rubiales of being “clueless” in his role.

“Speaking in football terms, in terms of what a club is and what sports management is, Rubiales is clueless,” he told radio station Onda Vasca.

“He is a rookie and his arguments are always a bit dictatorial.”

Director of football Fernando Hierro has stepped into the breach left after Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales sacked Julen Lopetegui (Manu Fernandez/AP)

The Spain squad, with director of football Fernando Hierro now in charge, left Krasnodar bound for Sochi on Thursday ahead of their World Cup opener with Portugal at the weekend.

- Press Association


Related Articles

Adidas shares surge 8.5% after World Cup sales boost

England keen to host 2030 World Cup

Pussy Riot members who disrupted World Cup rearrested in Moscow

FIFA urged to conduct independent investigation into Qatar World Cup bid claims

More in this Section

Team line-ups for All-Ireland hurling final revealed

Cipriani disciplinary hearing sparks row between RFU and Gloucester

5 key talking points ahead of this weekend’s Premier League fixtures

Deontay Wilder posturing sees US heavyweight trade verbal blows with Tyson Fury


Today's Stories

Horgan may still miss out despite move

People forget Galway are at least four years into their curve

Puckout strategy the key for underdogs Limerick

The hurling academy: A Limerick legend’s legacy

More From The Irish Examiner