Greece news

Valverde to leave Olympiakos

April 19, 2012

Spaniard Ernesto Valverde will step down as coach of Greek champions Olympiakos at the end of the season, the club announced on Thursday.

Ernesto Valverde has guided Olympiakos to success in his two spells at the club
GettyImagesErnesto Valverde has guided Olympiakos to success in his two spells at the club

Valverde, 48, is currently in his second spell in charge of the Athens club, having steered them to three Super League titles plus a Greek Cup win.

Their latest league success was confirmed earlier this month, while they will also contest the cup final against Atromitos on April 28.

However, with just one round of matches remaining in the league, Valverde has revealed he will not be at the helm next season.

"Last year, when we renewed our cooperation for one more season, I told the president that it will be my last here. However, we had agreed not to say anything as we thought it was in the best interest of the club so that we could have stability within the team," Valverde said in Thursday's press conference.

"There are several reasons for my decision. The main reason is a personal one which affects only me - things that concern my personal life and which cannot be discussed at a press conference.

"The second reason is that I have been with this club for three years and I know that this is a club with high excellence, a team that always wanted to win and this can be very exhausting for someone. Three years is a very long time in football.''

Club president Evangelos Marinakis admits Valverde will be sorely missed by the club.

"I hope that this farewell, which will come after our last official match, will signify yet another title for the team, that of the Greek Cup,'' he said. "After all, everyone in the club wants to end the season by achieving the double. We will remain in constant contact and cooperation with Ernesto Valverde and as I said before, the door here at our club will always be open for him.''