Spain Re-Appoint Luis Enrique As Manager
Spain have re-appointed Luis Enrique as national team manager five months after the former Barcelona boss resigned for personal reasons.
Enrique stepped down in June after his nine-year-old daughter, Xana Enrique, was diagnosed with bone cancer, and was replaced in the role by his assistant, Robert Moreno, who guided Spain to EURO 2020 qualification.
Xana succumbed to the disease in August, and after a period of grief, Enrique has decided to take back his old job.
When Moreno took charge of the Spain national team on a contract until next summer’s European championships, he made it clear that he would be happy to allow Enrique back into the role should the former Barcelona boss be interested in returning.
But the manner in which his exit was handled has reportedly left Moreno with a heavy heart.
Moreno did not conduct his post-match news conference on Monday after Spain rounded off the EURO 2020 qualifiers with a 5-0 home win over Romania when it became clear that he would be making way for his old boss.
Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales said on Tuesday to announce Enrique’s return: "We want to thank Robert Moreno for his work, he did very well, and we are very happy with what he did.
“But I repeat that Robert Moreno told us he'd spoken with Luis Enrique, who had told him he wanted to return.
“We found out through Moreno that Luis Enrique wanted to be back."
This is Spain’s fifth managerial alteration since June 2018.
Julen Lopetegui was sacked on the eve of Spain’s world cup opener against Portugal last year after he accepted to replace Zinedine Zidane as Real Madrid boss without the Royal Spanish Football Federation’s knowledge.
Lopetegui was replaced by Fernando Hierro for the tournament but he departed his role after Spain lost on penalties to hosts Russia in the last 16 stage.
Enrique, who led Barcelona to win the 2015 Champions League, took over in July 2018 on a two-year contract before being replaced by Moreno when his late daughter’s predicament started.