Julen Lopetegui (57, Spain) is heading to Saudi Arabia after coaching Hwang Hee-chan (27, South Korea) at Wolverhampton Wanderers until last season. He will take the helm after accepting a ‘job offer’ from the Al Ittihad club. The negotiations are now in their final stages and it”s expected that the contract will be signed soon to finalize everything.토토사이트
“Lopetegui will soon arrive in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, to discuss the final details with Al Ittihad Club,” European soccer transfer market expert Rudi Galletti reported on social media on Friday (Aug. 15), adding, “It is expected to finalize all procedures and sign the contract during the A-match break.”
Lopetegui previously parted ways with Wolverhampton by mutual consent in August, just before the start of the English Premier League (EPL) season. Lopetegui took over at the helm of the relegated Wolverhampton Wanderers in November of last year and led them to a decent run of form, but as they prepared for the new season, he and the management team had differences over squad reinforcements and eventually parted ways, unable to bridge the gap.
Lopetegui has been a ‘man on the street’ for some time now. Until recently, Lopetegui was in the running to take charge of Napoli, Villarreal and Olympique Lyonnais, but turned them down in favor of a return to the EPL. He was then approached by the club, which recently sacked Nuno Ispirito Santo (49-Portugal), and after much deliberation, he decided to accept the offer and is now on the verge of taking over.
Lopetegui will be reunited with Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema (35, France) for the first time in five years if he takes the reins at the Etihad. Lopetegui previously coached Benzema when he took over at Real Madrid in 2018. However, their time together was short-lived as Lopetegui was sacked after just three months in charge due to poor results. He will also be joined by N’Golo Kante (32, France) and Fabinho (30, Brazil).
Lopetegui is a Spanish-born manager who has coached Porto, the Spanish national soccer team, Real Madrid, Sevilla, and Wolverhampton Wanderers. Last summer, Lopetegui visited Korea for a pre-season tour with Sevilla and was widely recognized by Korean fans. During his visit, he actively participated in various Korean cultural experiences and showed good fan service in open training sessions, building a favorable image.