Villarreal appoint Escriba as first-team coach


Fran Escriba has been appointed as Villarreal's head coach for the 2016-17 season, the LaLiga club have confirmed.

Villarreal issued a statement on Wednesday confirming Marcelino had "ceased to be the coach" of the team who reached the Europa League semi-finals and finished fourth in Spain's top flight last season - sealing qualification for the Champions League following an eight-year exile.

The club thanked Marcelino for the "great success" he achieved at El Madrigal but reports in Spain suggested both a rift with the board over its close-season transfer policy and a breakdown in dressing-room relations on account of stripping defender Mateo Musacchio of the captaincy.

Former Elche and Getafe boss Escriba is the man charged with picking up the pieces, and he will address the media at a news conference later on Thursday.

The 51-year-old's first game in charge will be the home leg of the Champions League play-off tie against Monaco next Wednesday, with a trip to Granada beginning the LaLiga campaign that weekend.