Lopetegui sacked by Spain on eve of World Cup

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Julen Lopetegui has sensationally been sacked as head coach of Spain, just two days before its opening Group B match - a showdown against neighbouring Portugal - at the 2018 World Cup.

Lopetegui has signed a three-year deal to succeed Zinedine Zidane Real Madrid - a move that was announced on Tuesday.

It was this news that is believed to have sealed Lopetegui's fate with Spain, throwing the heavily-favoured European nation's World Cup hopes into turmoil.

“The negotiations have occurred without any information to the Spanish FA and we were informed just five minutes before the press release," Spanish Football Association president Luis Rubiales said. "There’s a way to act that needs to be fulfilled.”

A replacement is set to be announced in the next day.