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World Cup: Fernando Hierro to take charge of Spain after shock Julen Lopetegui sacking

Sporting News logo Sporting News 13/06/2018
Fernando Hierro, who will take charge of Spain for the 2018 World Cup © Getty Images Fernando Hierro, who will take charge of Spain for the 2018 World Cup

Fernando Hierro will take charge of Spain for the duration of the World Cup following the sacking of Julen Lopetegui, the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) has confirmed.

The 50-year-old former national team captain was appointed within hours of the announcement of Lopetegui's departure.

The RFEF did not specify whether Hierro may continue in the role beyond the finals in Russia.

Lopetegui was sensationally sacked on Wednesday after agreeing to become the next Real Madrid head coach, with RFEF president Luis Rubiales furious that the European champions only informed him of the deal minutes before the news was made public.

Rubiales told a news conference that he was left with no choice but to dismiss Lopetegui, just three weeks after he signed a new contract until 2020, and stressed the need to appoint a replacement without causing undue disruption to the squad.

Hierro, a winner of five LaLiga titles and three Champions Leagues in a glittering Madrid career, is relatively inexperienced as a coach.

He was an assistant to Carlo Ancelotti at Madrid during the 2014-15 season before taking charge of second-tier Oviedo in 2016-17.

Hierro has been working as Spain's sporting director since last November.

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