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Lopetegui was appointed Spain coach in July 2016 and never tasted defeat in the job, leading the team through 20 unbeaten games ahead of the World Cup.
"We have a great opportunity and that should be the focus".
Immediately, the conversation turned to who might replace Lopetegui for the World Cup.
Hierro also had a spell with Bolton in the Premier League at the end of his playing career. It's a challenge for everyone. "I know the circumstances and Julen's work has been fantastic and I wish him all the best", he said. Del Bosque had led La Roja to a almost unprecedented run of success, with its 2010 World Cup championship sandwiched between European titles in 2008 and 2012. "We all know what this means and our responsibilities".
The 51-year-old was announced as the new manager of Real Madrid on Tuesday and Spanish football federation (RFEF) president Luis Rubiales was furious with the timing of the news. "Madrid put its interests first, as did Lopetegui, and (Spanish federation president Luis) Rubiales was left in a very tough spot. I couldn't say no because I would not forgive myself".
Julen Lopetegui stands by the bench during an global friendly soccer match between Spain and Costa Rica on November 11, 2017.
One of Rubiales' first tasks in his role was to extend Lopetegui's contract, and now the Spain boss has reneged by signing a deal with Madrid, the Spanish FA chief was concerned he has been played a fool.
"I listened to everybody, but the decision was mine". It's bold, it's ruthless. "But perhaps that was already true and while they have lost much, including perhaps the tactical nuance and variations Lopetegui has introduced, this is a group of players who can still compete and have a certain capacity for self-management", added Lowe.
Will it affect them?
"Obviously there was some sort of problem with communication but we can't be expected to find out about something like this five minutes and not take the necessary decisions".