Football: Former Barcelona boss Luis Enrique named as Spain manager on a 2-year deal

Luis Enrique has spent the past year on sabbatical since leaving the Nou Camp in May 2017.
Luis Enrique has spent the past year on sabbatical since leaving the Nou Camp in May 2017.PHOTO: AFP

MADRID (REUTERS) - The Spanish Football Federation has appointed Luis Enrique as Spain's new national team coach, the governing body's president Luis Rubiales said during a press conference on Monday (July 9).

A former midfielder at Sporting Gijon, Real Madrid and Barcelona, Luis Enrique won two LaLiga titles, one Champions League and three King's Cups as Barca coach between 2014 and 2017.

The former Celta Vigo coach won the treble in first campaign at Barca's helm and has spent the past year on sabbatical since leaving the Nou Camp in May 2017.

"Luis Enrique's appointment as coach for the next two years was approved unanimously. The decision was unanimous. I like his commitment and he has turned down better paid jobs in order to coach Spain. He’s a coach who completes all the requirements the federation was looking for," Rubiales told reporters.

Julen Lopetegui was fired on the eve of the World Cup after his surprise announcement that he had signed to take over at Real Madrid, while Fernando Hierro, who stood in as coach and led Spain to the last 16 where they lost to hosts Russia on penalties, said on Sunday he would not continue in his role beyond the tournament.

Rubiales also appointed former La Roja and Deportivo La Coruna goalkeeper Jose Francisco Molina as Spain's new sporting director.

Enrique’s first game in charge will be a Uefa Nations League game away to England at Wembley Stadium on Sept 8.