Minguez leaves as Spanish coach after salary row

Just under two months since they took the men’s road world title with Alejandro Valverde, the Spanish Cycling Federation (RFEC) has announced that they will not renew the contract of national coach Javier Minguez after a breakdown in relations.

In an announcement on the REFC website, the governing body said financial constraints meant that they would not be able to provide the salary increase that Minguez had requested.

“Currently, the Royal Spanish Cycling Federation is immersed in a viability plan guided by the Higher Sports Council with which it must comply,” the statement reads.

“In order to continue reducing the debt, which currently is more than one and a half million euros, the Federation will continue with the economic policy that has been carried out in recent years, which contemplates a comprehensive control of federal spending, including technical salaries, auxiliaries and Federation personnel. These circumstances do not allow us to carry out the salary increase that Javier Mínguez has publicly demanded and, therefore, we will go into 2019 with a new national coach. The person who will take the reins of the male elite road team will be revealed in the coming weeks.

“The Royal Spanish Cycling Federation wants to wish Javier Mínguez the best for the future, as well as to thank him for his dedication and dedication to the Spanish national team during this successful journey.”

Minguez has been the Spanish coach for five years, after taking up the reins in 2013.

Days after Valverde’s victory in Innsbruck, he threatened to quit over a row over his finances. The 69-year-old told Europa Press early last month that he wasn’t paid for two years and that his current salary of €25,000 was not enough. Federation president José Luis López Cerrón told the publication that they intended on offering a new contract with an increased salary until 2020. However, this appears not to have worked out.

Speaking with Radio Marca soon after it was announced he would no longer be the new national coach, Minguez said that the writing was on the wall soon after Valverde’s victory.

“The night of the party [after the men’s road race] they make you bitter when the president consults the riders if they want you to continue,” Minguez told Marca. “To be the coach is my life. I want to continue, but not like that.”

Spanish publication AS reports that current under-23 coach Pascual Momparler has been lined up as the replacement for Minguez, with other reports suggesting former world champion Oscar Freire could be considered.

Momparler has a strong track record on the under-23 side, helping to guide Marc Soler and Ruben Fernandez to victory at the Tour de l’Avenir.

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