Luis Enrique says this is “not the right time” to discuss his future after Spain slumped to a shock FIFA World Cup exit against Morocco, adding that he could yet stay on as La Roja’s head coach.
Spain, who arrived in Qatar as one of the tournament favourites, suffered a second consecutive last-16 elimination via a penalty shoot-out after a 1-1 draw at Education City Stadium. Pablo Sarabia, Carlos Soler and Sergio Busquets all failed to convert as Morocco ran out 3-0 winners in the shoot-out.
The loss to Morocco has thrown the future of Enrique – whose contract is set to expire after the competition – into doubt.
However, the former Barcelona boss says he will take time to consider his future, adding he is happy with the support he has received from the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF).
Asked whether he would stay on after the game, he responded: “I cannot tell you, I don’t know this decision. This is not the right time to discuss my future, it’s not relevant.
“My contract is going to end, but I am very happy with the national team, with the federation, and I have always had great support from [Jose Francisco] Molina, who is the sporting director. “I could always carry on. I need to have peace of mind to decide what’s best for me and the team.”
Meanwhile, Enrique insisted he was happy with the way his team played and stood by his style of football following the loss to Morocco.
“We dominated but lacked a goal,” he said. “We created chances, we were progressive but we met an opponent who performed to a high level.
“We could’ve created more and been more efficient but I was happy with my team. They represent me and represent my style and I can only praise them.
“I am very happy with the profile of the players I have in my squad, I would not change them, I would go with them till the end. If anyone is responsible it’s me. This is sport, there is no point in punishing ourselves.”
Enrique also had words of praise for Sarabia, Soler and Busquets for having the courage to take a spot-kick in front of an intimidating pro-Morocco support at Education City Stadium. The trio missed their spot kicks during the penalty shootout.
“We created enough chances to win the match but the end [the shoot-out] was not a lottery.
“You have to control yourself and be brave in managing that. I would select the same players to do it. Sarabia, Soler and Busquets were great, they missed, no problem – it’s part of the sport,” concluded the Spanish coach.
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