World Cup: Spain manager Fernando Hierro resigns

By Alex Butler  |  July 8, 2018 at 10:59 AM
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July 8 (UPI) -- Fernando Hierro has stepped down from his role as manager of the Spanish national team, following the team's round of 16 exit at the 2018 World Cup.

The Royal Spanish Football Federation announced the move on Sunday morning.

He also declined an offer to return to his previous job as the technical director of the RFEF. Hierro, 50, took over as the interim manager on June 13, the same day that Spain fired manager Julen Lopetegui on the eve the World Cup.

Lopetegui was Spain's coach since 2016 and never lost a game in his tenure.

The RFEF said that Hierro declined to return to his former role in order to "seek new horizons and undertake new professional challenges." He held the sporting director role from 2007 to 2011 and returned to the role in November.

Hierro scored 29 goals in 89 games as a player for the Spanish national team. He participated in the World Cups of 1990, 1994, 1998 and 2002. He spent most of his career with Real Madrid.

Hierro managed Spain for just 25 days. The No. 10 team in the world exited the 2018 World Cup by losing to host country Russia in penalty kicks on July 1 in Moscow. Russia is ranked No. 70 in the world.

Spain battles Wales in a friendly on October 11 at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.

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