With a few days to go for their first World Cup clash, the Spanish team have a major distraction on their hands. Julen Lopetegui, the team's coach has been given marching orders a day after Real Madrid announced that he had been made manager of the club for the next season.
News flowing from the Spanish team's cloak room is that many of the players, especially the non-Real Madrid members of the contingent, were left fuming with indignation at the announcement of Lopetegui's appointment as manager of the country's premier club. Concerned with the morale health of the team following the Real announcement, the head of the Spanish Royal Football Federation (RFEF), Luis Rubiales, decided there was no other option than to let Lopetegui go.
The decision was made even harder by the fact that he was doing an extraordinarily good job after taking over from Del Bosque. The Spanish team have been on a unbeatable run of 22 matches and looked every inch a hot contender for the WC 2018 title. Rubailes said that the way to keep the team's chances of winning the Cup intact was to remove the person whose trust the team had lost. It is reported that Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos was the lone player to have insisted on Lopetegui staying on.
“The players will do everything within their reach to win the World Cup. But the situation is very difficult. It is very complex. This is not the best solution but in life you cannot escape your responsibilities,” said Rubiales.
As La Roja have only 2 days for their opening clash with neighbors Portugal, the RFEF have hastily appointed former Spain star defender Fernando Hierro as Spain’s new coach.
Hierro who faces baptism by fire at Sochi on Saturday, said that the team needed to get over the sacking drama fast. He also added that the players despite the untoward situation, were excited and wanted the challenge.
“I know they're going to give 100%. In a World Cup nobody gives anything away. We all know what this means and our responsibilities.” said Hierro.
Former England striker Alan Shearer has been heard reacting positively to the news of Lopetegui and it sums up the situation well “I admire their decision. It's bold, it's ruthless. I'm pretty sure they must have spoken to a number of players in the squad. I'm very surprised at the timing of it – two days before their opening game – but they still have an excellent, experienced squad with some top players in it” he said
The effect of all this is that there will a huge amount of attention on the players and along with it more pressure. Fans will fervently hope that all goes well for La Roja in Russia.
New Customers only Min stake £10 at odds of 2.0 or more. Single real money bet only. Cashed out bets not qualified. Free bet and free spins credited 24 hours after first bet. Free bet min odds 2.0 max odds 100. Free bet stake not returned with winnings. Full T&C's apply. 18 + only.
New customers only. Min Deposit £10. Deposit & bonus amount must be wagered 6 times (min odds 4/5) prior to withdrawing bonus funds and any winnings. Wins from real money bets withdrawable at any time. Bonus on sports betting only. T&Cs apply.
Valid for new players from 01/05/2019 and 30/06/2019. Min deposit of £20 is required to be eligible for the offer. Upon the first deposit a player will receive 1000 Volt Points per £10 deposited. Maximum Volt Points is capped at 12000. Player must exchange his/her Volt Points in the Volt Shop for the desired FreeBet value. £10 FreeBet = 10000 Volt Points. FreeBet stake is excluded from bet returns. Volt Casino general terms & conditions apply.
Available to New Players only | 6 Qualifying bets | Horse Racing bets do not Qualify | Min stake £10 | Max Bonus £35 | No E-Wallets | Min Odds Evens (2.0) or 2/5 (1.4) for combos | BeGambleAware.org | 18+ | Terms and conditions apply.
New customers only. Free bet credited if your first bet on Glory Goals loses. Max free bet £250. Free bets must be used within 48 hours on any Glory Games market. Qualifying bets must be placed with 48 hours of making first deposit. Min odds of 1.2 for qualifying bets and free bet usage. 18+ BeGambleAware. Full T&C's apply.
18+, first deposit only, T&Cs apply. Opt-in required. Deposits with Skrill, PayPal, Neteller and Paysafecard not eligible. Casino bonus: min. £10, max. £100. Bonus/free spins winnings wagering requirement: x35. Max. bonus bet: £5, can vary. Free sports bet: min. deposit and stake £20 (min. odds 2.0). Credited after all qualifying bets settled. begambleaware.org
New customers only. Valid once per customer. Bonus expires after 30 days. Offer expires 31.05.19. 7 x turnover at 1.6 minimum odds before withdrawal. Skrill and Neteller deposits excluded. 18+ only. BeGambleAware