Real confirm Lopetegui appointment

12 June 2018 12:09:35 EST

Real Madrid have confirmed that Julen Lopetegui will become their new head coach once he has completed his World Cup 2018 duties with Spain.

Lopetegui has agreed a three-year contract to succeed Zinedine Zidane at the Santiago Bernabeu, with the latter having opted to step aside after winning a third consecutive Champions League title.

Fifty-one-year-old Lopetegui, who made one senior appearance for the club, worked with Real as coach of their B team between 2008 and 2009, before moving into the national team set-up, where he coached at three different levels.

In the summer of 2014 he was tempted back into club management with Portuguese powerhouses FC Porto, where he lasted around 18 months before being sacked.

However, within a matter of months Lopetegui was handed the top job back in his homeland, taking over in July 2016 on the retirement of Vicente del Bosque.

Since then he has led La Roja in 20 matches, of which they have won 16, drawn four and lost none.

In World Cup qualifying they dropped just two points from ten games played in finishing top of Group G, five points ahead of Italy - who went on to lose to Sweden in the play-offs.

For the finals in Russia, which start on Thursday, Spain have been drawn in Group B alongside neighbours and European champions Portugal, as well as Morocco and Iran.

Spain can be backed at 8/13 to top Group B, while they are 9/2 to be eliminated at the semi-final stage of the tournament and are 13/2 to lose in the final.

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