David Moyes’s bid to resurrect his career in La Liga ended in failure when Real Sociedad sacked him on Monday following a defeat at Las Palmas which left them hovering just above the relegation places.
Moyes, who took over at Sociedad almost exactly a year ago after a disappointing spell in charge of English Premier League club Manchester United, has been replaced by former Celta Vigo and Barcelona B coach Eusebio Sacristan.
The 51-year-old Eusebio, who is taking on his first top-flight coaching job, has signed a contract until the end of next season.
San Sebastian-based Sociedad are mired in 16th place in the table on nine points having won only two of their 11 games this season and are in similar dire straits as they were when Moyes took over.
The team’s woeful performance in Friday’s 2-0 reverse at promoted Las Palmas was the final straw for president Jokin Aperribay and the board.
“Real Sociedad has decided to rescind the contract of first-team coach David Moyes,” the club said on their website (www.realsociedad.com) on Monday, adding that assistant Billy McKinlay had also been released.
Eusebio played under Johan Cruyff in Barca’s ‘Dream Team’ in the 1990s and was an assistant coach at the Catalan club to Frank Rijkaard.
He took charge at Celta when they were in the second division before a similarly indifferent spell coaching Barca’s B team.
His debut as Sociedad coach will be the La Liga game at home to Sevilla on Nov. 21 followed by a trip to champions Barca.
Scotsman Moyes, 52, faced a tough task when he replaced Jagoba Arrasate with the club suffering from the sale of key players like France forward Antoine Griezmann and Chile goalkeeper Claudio Bravo and minimal investment.
The former Everton manager, whose contract ran until the end of this season, was considered a risky appointment by some critics in Spain due to his limited knowledge of La Liga and inability to speak the language.
Tasked with returning Sociedad to European competition, Moyes led them to a disappointing 12th-placed finish last season, although they did beat Barca 1-0 in January.
The return of midfielder Asier Illarramendi from Real Madrid lifted fans’ spirits but the Sociedad academy graduate has so far been unable to lift the team.