Celades Named Real Madrid Assistant

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Former Spain Under-21 coach Albert Celades has been appointed Julen Lopetegui's assistant at Real Madrid.

Celades left his post with the Under-21s last month, bringing a five-year association with the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) to an end, reportedly due to the disappointment of being overlooked to replace Lopetegui in charge of Spain's senior side at the World Cup.

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Lopetegui was dismissed two days prior to Spain's Russia 2018 campaign starting as a result of agreeing to become Zinedine Zidane's successor at Madrid.

Celades was an assistant to Fernando Hierro as Spain were eliminated by the hosts in the last 16, before opting to sever ties completely with the RFEF after the tournament.

The 42-year-old former Madrid and Barcelona midfielder initially coached Spain's Under-16s, before taking up his most recent role in May 2014.

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But, despite spending four years in charge, many were critical of Celades for a perceived inability to get the best out of his team and impose a philosophy.

A regular claim levelled against him was that his deficiencies as a coach were frequently covered up by the individual brilliance of his players, with the side reaching the 2017 Under-21 European Championship final – where they lost to Germany – without playing particularly well.

Nevertheless, Lopetegui has chosen the former Spain international as his right-hand man for his debut campaign in charge at the Santiago Bernabeu, ensuring another familiar face returns to Los Blancos.

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