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Spain firing Julen Lopetegui was an 'absurd reaction — Real Madrid's Perez

Spain firing Julen Lopetegui was an 'absurd reaction — Real Madrid's Perez

Spain firing Julen Lopetegui was an 'absurd reaction — Real Madrid's Perez

Rubiales said the sacking could have been avoided if full discussions had taken place between the club and the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) before the news about Lopetegui's move to Madrid was made public.

Perez referred to Lopetegui's arrival as "an act we wanted to have after the World Cup", saying: "Sadly some circumstances mean that we are here now with some excitement for the new stage of Real Madrid".

For a player with 121 caps and counting, David Silva has only played 241 minutes of World Cup football.

Lopetegui said it would have been "bad" to hide his appointment from the Spain squad, adding "the players took it well". "We are neighbours, but also teams with great quality". "But a series of events mean we are here today".

"We had legitimate freedom to make this agreement", said Perez. I told the federation president about the agreement, which both sides were free to make.

Xavi, a 133-time Spain worldwide, was unhappy with the timing of the announcement of Lopetegui's Madrid move.

"We welcome someone who knows this club very well and in the last few years he has shown what a magnificent professional he is".

"We are convinced that all we have done is absolutely honest and clear", Lopetegui said.

Portugal won the 2016 European Championship, has 13 players from that team in Russian Federation, and looked much like that winning squad in a 3-0 preseason victory over Algeria. Some people want to be more popular but I won't waste time or name them.

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There are many precedents [of national coach moving to club after tournament].

"I feel like I'm part of this family".

Fernando Hierro, a former Spain player who had been acting as the team's sports director in Russian Federation, will lead the country in his first major coaching job.

Hierro and Ramos posed together, smiling for the cameras, at a press conference inside the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi, the venue for the Group B clash between the Iberian neighbours.

"We can not alter two years of hard work in the coming days - from now until the Portugal match, we don't have the ability to change much".

"It's not a huge problem for them because the players are so good that they pick themselves".

"Yesterday was the saddest day of my life since the death of my mother".

World Cup player focus #2: Bernardo Silva: With 16 of our City players representing their country in this year's World Cup, we continue our coverage with daily player profiles. "He is clearly the best in the world at Real Madrid".

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