December 30, 2016 / 5:59 PM / 9 months ago

Prandelli quits Valencia after woeful run

MADRID (Reuters) - Former Italy boss Cesare Prandelli has resigned as Valencia coach after one win in eight La Liga matches in charge, the Spanish team said on Friday.

Prandelli took over in October on a contract until June 2018, becoming Valencia’s seventh coach since Singapore businessman Peter Lim bought the club in May 2014.

“Cesare Prandelli has communicated ... his irrevocable decision to resign from his position as coach, as of Friday,” the club said in a statement.

Salvador ‘Voro’ Gonzalez, a senior member of the coaching staff, will stand in as caretaker of the first team squad.

After a 2-1 win over Sporting Gijon in Prandelli’s first match, Valencia have lost four and drawn three games in La Liga although they beat Leganes home and away in the King’s Cup.

Valencia are fourth from bottom in the table with 12 points from 15 games, nine of them defeats, above the relegation zone only on goal difference.

It is a far cry from Prandelli’s optimism at his appointment when he said it was “an honour to be in such a glorious club and we want to take it back there”.

Valencia are one of Spain’s leading clubs but coach after coach, including former England defender Gary Neville last season, has fallen by the wayside in recent times.

Prandelli replaced Pako Ayestaran who was sacked with the worst record of any coach in the club’s 98-year history after taking 10 points from 12 matches.

He followed Neville, who has the second worst record, into the job in March.

Prandelli had the coaching experience, with Fiorentina, Galatasaray and Italy, who he led to second place at Euro 2012, that Neville and Ayestaran did not possess.

However, having been in charge for two months, the Italian gave an insight into the difficulties he had turning round the team’s performances and player attitudes, saying: ”Those that want to stay here need to prove they deserve to.

“It’s not a problem of tactics, it’s a problem of personality.”

That was before yet another defeat, 3-2 at Real Sociedad on Dec. 10, in what proved to be the 59-year-old’s last match at the helm.

Reporting by Rex Gowar, editing Ed Osmond

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