Julen Lopetegui Could Face Spain Exit One Day Before World Cup After Real Madrid Announcement


Spain manager Julen Lopetegui could leave his position two days before La Furia Roja start their World Cup campaign, after Real Madrid ​announced him as their new manager on Wednesday.

Lopetegui and RFEF president Luis Rubiales are set to speak to the media on Wednesday morning and rumours abound that they will announce his departure, with Albert Celades and Fernando Hierro likely to step in if so.

Madrid were not planning to make the announcement until after the World Cup but word quickly spread throughout the Spain squad and Madrid made the announcement in an attempt to prevent unrest.

But it looks set to backfire drastically as Spain could find themselves without a permanent manager on the eve of the World Cup.

Their campaign gets underway against Portugal on Friday and they are considered among the favourites to win the tournament.

Rubiales is reportedly furious with Lopetegui for telling ​Real to announce the news, though he maintained a placid facade upon his arrival at Spain's Krasnodar base.

"This is not the time to talk, but we will make the decision that best suits the squad, we will do things responsibly," he said, as quoted by ​Marca.

Lopetegui took charge of Spain after their last 16 exit at Euro 2016 and guided them to an unbeaten qualifying campaign.

He will step into big shoes at Real Madrid, after Zinedine Zidane stepped down from the post following three consecutive Champions League triumphs.