Spain took the drastic action of sacking their coach Julen Lopetegui on Wednesday, just two days ahead of their opening World Cup game.
The Spanish Football Federation made the decision just a day after Real Madrid announced that Lopetegui would take over from Zinedine Zidane as coach after the World Cup.
Federation President Luis Rubiales said he was informed of the move just five minutes before it was announced, leaving him with no choice but to terminate Lopetegui’s contract.
The decision was applauded by many, but others were not so sure it was a great move less than 48 hours before Spain’s crunch World Cup Group B match against Portugal.
FOX Sports Asia takes a look at some of the online reaction.
Own goal by Spain to sack Julen Lopetegui on eve of World Cup even if they didn’t like timing of his Real Madrid appointment. Disruptive.
— Ian Darke (@IanDarke) June 13, 2018
Not much has been said about Lopetegui. Himself. The Madrid job must now provoke odd emotions in him, probably even a touch of bitterness. It can't feel the same any more. Must wonder what he's done. What he has lost is huge. And all so avoidable.
— Sid Lowe (@sidlowe) June 13, 2018
And what must Lopetegui be thinking? Cost himself the chance at a dream, while souring another “dream job” he’s just taken.
— Miguel Delaney (@MiguelDelaney) June 13, 2018
Many were angry with Real Madrid.
For the last 20 years the superclubs have bullied everyone, national FAs, domestic leagues, TV companies, fans. Spanish FA has taken a stand for the rest of football. Arrogance of Real Madrid in announcing Lopetegui as manager 2 days before World Cup couldn't be allowed to stand.
— Ronan McGreevy (@RMcGreevy1301) June 13, 2018
Real Madrid will present Julen Lopetegui as their manager tomorrow at 18:45. They just hate the World Cup, don't they?!
— Robbie Dunne (@robbiejdunne) June 13, 2018
Majority of Madrid board have involvement in Spanish FA, Spanish FA sack Lopetegui, Madrid no longer have to pay 2 Mil release clause… A drop in the water for Madrid, but wouldn’t at all be surprised if Perez had something to do with it #Lopetegui #Madrid
— Jordan Passarelli (@jordpassarelli) June 13, 2018
Of course, some fans tried to see the lighter side of events.
The big takeaway of Julen Lopetegui being sacked by Spain is how utterly terrifying the president of the Spanish Football Federation, Luis Rubiales, looks. Sacked? Lopetegui is lucky he wasn’t kneecapped pic.twitter.com/XKdZrqh06m
— Sachin Nakrani (@SachinNakrani) June 13, 2018
😂🤣😂😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣😬😬spot on. The Lopetegui scenario is the equivalent of a bloke dumping his bird of two years the day before their wedding to run away with a stunner who will leave him after three months https://t.co/49AkeicWur
— Joe (@joe_in_espana) June 13, 2018
Julen Lopetegui , Spain and Real Madrid in summary.. pic.twitter.com/vgNcZRPGtv
— Okafor Uchenna 🇳🇬 (@Uchekush_) June 13, 2018