Spain have appointed themselves a new head coach after taking the express decision to sack their last incumbent one day before the start of the World Cup.
Luis Enrique has today been confirmed as the successor to Julen Lopetegui, who lost his job last month after agreeing to take over at Real Madrid despite having a contract with the national team that was good for another couple of years.
Fernando Hierro then stepped up to take interim charge of La Roja’s fortunes in Russia, only to be knocked out by the hosts on penalties in the last 16.
Hierro has since declined an offer to return to his old post as sporting director of the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) as he
is already tired of the ceaseless nonsense wants to “seek new horizons and undertake new professional challenges”.
The 50-year-old was immediately replaced by new sporting director Jose Francisco Molina, whose first order of business was to hire Enrique…
— Selección Española de Fútbol (@SeFutbol) 9 July 2018
The ex-Barcelona manager has agreed a two-year deal with the focus being on Spain qualifying, and not then disgracing themselves at Euro 2020.
Announcing Enrique’s appointment at a press conference on Monday afternoon, RFEF president Luis Rubiales said:
The decision has been unanimous, we like Enrique’s commitment – he has turned down better economic opportunities elsewhere to begin coaching Spain.
This coach meets all the parameters from the criteria of the RFEF sports management committee.
With a once-imperious squad quite obviously coming to the end of its life cycle, the scale and scope of Enrique’s rebuilding job shouldn’t be underestimated.
First port of call should be finding a reliable first-choice striker who isn’t so evidently at odds with everybody else on the field.