(REUTERS) - Luis Aragones, who managed Spain to glory at Euro 2008 and sparked the country's recent golden era in international football, died on Saturday, the country's football association said.
The 75-year-old died at 6.15am local time (1.15pm in Singapore) in the Centro de Madrid clinic in the Spanish capital, said the RFEF, which expressed its sorrow at the loss of the "Spain national coach at the start of their glorious run of success in world football".
Spain were long regarded as under-achievers but Aragones changed that perception with the 2008 victory which paved the way for further triumphs under Vicente del Bosque at the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012.
Aragones realised the need to get rid of old players in the Spain dressing room like Raul and Michel Salgado and create a new playing style based on the short-passing football that was bringing success at Barcelona.
The often eccentric coach was derided in the Spanish press for dropping the established stars before results started to improve.
He chose to stand down after the Euro success and then went on to coach Turkish side Fenerbahce, which ended in failure after one season in 2009.