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Spain names new football coach

Published on 02/07/2004

2 July 2004

MADRID — Spain’s football federation named a new national team coach putting behind it the saga surrounding the departure of former manager Iñaki Saez, it was reported Friday.

RFEF soccer federation named Luis Aragones as the new coach.

After Spain’s early departure from the Euro 2004 tournament, Saez refused to resign but after mounting pressure from the media opted to go.

The new coach was unveiled by RFEF president Angel Maria Villar, who said Aragones was chosen “by consensus” after a 90-minute meeting of the selection committee.

“First, we announce that we have chosen, by consensus among all segments of Spanish soccer, Luis Aragones as coach of the national team,” Villar said at a press conference.

Villar said Aragones, whom FC Mallorca club released from his contract just so he could be considered by the committee, will sign a two-year contract to direct the team’s preparations for the 2006 World Cup, taking place in Germany.

The RFEF chief said Aragones was chosen because “he is a great coach, boasts a great sports career, is enthusiastic about being the national coach and, fourthly, because all segments of Spanish soccer chose to become part of the consensus to crown his election.”

As soon as the meeting was over, Villar said, he phoned both Aragones and Mallorca club president Mateo Alemany, who replied that the team is making a sacrifice “for the good of Spanish soccer.”

Aragones will make his debut with the national team on Aug. 18 in a friendly match against Venezuela in Las Palmas, in Spain’s Canary Islands.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news