Luis Enrique has decided to take a few days to reflect before deciding whether to continue as the Spain coach.
“He will be the coach until he wants to be,” the president of the RFEF, Luis Rubiales, has said on more than one occasion.
Therefore, in the meeting scheduled for next week, Lucho’s word will be crucial to determine if he renews his contract that is due to expire at the end of the year.
While waiting for Lucho’s decision, the RFEF are exploring alternatives, with three names currently on the table: Marcelino García Toral, Roberto Martinez and Luis de la Fuente.
Marcelino is a free agent after finishing his contract with Athletic Club this past summer. He is a coach who is well-regarded within the complex environment of La Roja and who would close the cracks that currently exist with Luis Enrique. However, his teams play in a different way traditionally, less daring and risk-taking than Lucho’s side — and Rubiales is characterised by giving an air of modernity in his decisions.
Martinez would be the option of prestige and experience. He has built a reputation in England, managing Swansea, Wigan and Everton, as well as with the Belgium national team. He led Belgium to a third place finish at the 2018 World Cup, bu too many internal quarrels led to a group stage exit this time. He resigned after the elimination.
He is a coach capable of adapting to different styles of play and would welcome the option of working in Spain for the first time in his managerial career. His reputation is high and he would be welcomed with respect.
Luis de la Fuente
Finally, De la Fuente would be the natural replacement to continue the work of Luis Enrique. His strategy with the U21 team is similar and he knows the youngsters who are standing out with the senior side because he has worked with them in the youth teams.
He has won the U19 and U21 Euros and the silver medal at the Tokyo Olympics. His talent is appreciated and he is a coach who would be far from controversial.
De la Fuente is currently preparing for the U21 European Championship to be played in Georgia and Romania, but at there are coaches like Santi Denia or Julen Guerrero who could take over from him.