Real Madrid appoint Spain manager Julen Lopetegui

Julen Lopetegui has been appointed Real Madrid manager

Julen Lopetegui has been appointed Real Madrid manager

Real Madrid have appointed Spain manager Julen Lopetegui as their new head coach on a three-year deal.

Zinedine Zidane, who led the club to three successive Champions League titles, stepped down in May, saying the club needs “a different voice”.

Lopetegui previously managed Porto for two years, before taking over at the Spanish national team in July 2016.

The 51-year-old will take up the position after the World Cup, which begins on 14 June.

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A former goalkeeper, Lopetegui made one senior appearance for Real Madrid but played 107 matches for Logrones.

He began coaching in 2003 as assistant manager to Spain’s Under-17 team. He managed Spain at Under-19, Under-20 and Under-21 level before moving to Porto.

Real finished third in La Liga last season, 17 points behind champions Barcelona.

Forward Gareth Bale previously said he would hold talks regarding his future at the club, while Cristiano Ronaldo also said he would make an announcement on his future.

Spain begin their World Cup campaign against Ronaldo’s Portugal on Friday in a match live on BBC One (19:00 BST kick-off).

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