Real Madrid have sacked Julen Lopetegui as manager after just four and a half months in charge.
Real, Champions League winners for the past three years, are currently ninth on the La Liga table, their worst start since 2001/2002. Sunday’s 5-1 loss to Barcelona proved to much for the club to bear with Lopetegui who took over from Zinedine Zidane in June
He has been “provisionally replaced” by ex-player Santiago Solari, coach of B team Castilla.
The club said in a statement said “there is a great disproportion between the quality of the staff of Real Madrid” and “the results obtained to date”.
It is the second time Lopetegui, 52, has been sacked this year having been dismissed by Spain two days before the World Cup.
That sacking came after it emerged the Spanish football federation was unaware he was in talks to take the Real job after the tournament.
Former Chelsea coach, Antonio Conte emerged the favourite to replace Lopetegui in recent weeks but negotiations with the Italian appear to have stalled and 42-year-old Solari has been given an opportunity, mirroring the appointment of former boss Zidane, another popular ex-player who had been in charge of Castilla.
Zidane took charge after Rafael Benitez was sacked in January 2016 and the Frenchman guided Real to three successive Champions League titles, before stepping down in May.
Former Real and Argentina midfielder Solari replaced Zidane as coach of Castilla, who are fifth in Segunda Division B, three points behind leaders Ponferradina.
Under Spanish regulations, an interim coach can be at the helm for a fortnight – but must be appointed officially after 15 days, or not at all.